Cave Streams (cave + stream)

Distribution by Scientific Domains

Selected Abstracts


Gary O. Graening
ABSTRACT: Subterranean ecosystems harbor globally rare fauna and important water resources, but ecological processes are poorly understood and are threatened by anthropogenic stresses. Ecosystem analyses were conducted from 1997 to 2000 in Cave Springs Cave, Arkansas, situated in a region of intensive land use, to determine the degree of habitat degradation and viability of endangered fauna. Organic matter budgeting quantified energy flux and documented the dominant input as dissolved organic matter and not gray bat guano (Myotis grisescens). Carbon/nitrogen stable isotope analyses described a trophic web of Ozark cavefish (Amblyopsis rosae) that primarily consumed cave isopods (Caecidotea stiladactyla), which in turn appeared to consume benthic matter originating from a complex mixture of soil, leaf litter, and anthropogenic wastes. Septic leachate, sewage sludge, and cow manure were suspected to augment the food web and were implicated in environmental degradation. Water, sediment, and animal tissue analyses detected excess nutrients, fecal bacteria, and toxic concentrations of metals. Community assemblage may have been altered: sensitive species-grotto salamanders (Typhlotriton spelaeus) and stygobro-mid amphipods,were not detected, while more resilient isopods flourished. Reduction of septic and agricultural waste inputs may be necessary to restore ecosystem dynamics in this cave ecosystem to its former undisturbed condition. [source]

Solute and Colloid Transport in Karst Conduits under Low- and High-Flow Conditions

GROUND WATER, Issue 1 2008
Nadine Göppert
Solute and colloid transport in karst aquifers under low and high flows was investigated by tracer tests using fluorescent dyes (uranine) and microspheres of the size of pathogenic bacteria (1 ,m) and Cryptosporidium cysts (5 ,m), which were injected into a cave stream and sampled at a spring 2.5 km away. The two types of microspheres were analyzed using an epifluorescence microscope or a novel fluorescence particle counter, respectively. Uranine breakthrough curves (BTCs) were regular shaped and recovery approached 100%. Microsphere recoveries ranged between 27% and 75%. During low flow, the 1-,m spheres displayed an irregular BTC preceding the uranine peak. Only a very few 5-,m spheres were recovered. During high flow, the 1-,m-sphere BTC was regular and more similar to the uranine curve. BTCs were modeled analytically with CXTFIT using a conventional advection dispersion model (ADM) and a two-region nonequilibrium model (2RNE). The results show that (1) colloids travel at higher velocities than solutes during low flow; (2) colloids and solutes travel at similar velocities during high flow; (3) higher maximum concentrations occur during high flow; and (4) the 2RNE achieves a better fit, while the ADM is more robust, as it requires less parameters. [source]

Chemical and Bacterial Quality of Aeration-Type Waste Water Treatment System Discharge

Samuel V Panno
On-site waste water treatment systems are a potential source of chemical and bacterial contamination to ground water in areas with highly susceptible aquifers such as the sinkhole plain of southwestern Illinois. Ground water from wells, cave streams, and water that discharges from the numerous springs in this area is typically contaminated with nitrate and enteric bacteria and thus may pose a health hazard to those who come into contact with it. In order to determine if the most popular type of on-site waste water treatment systems in the study area was a potential source, samples of effluents discharged at the land surface from 23 domestic aeration-type on-site waste water treatment systems were collected to characterize their water quality and bacterial contents. Most of the effluents contained relatively large concentrations of sodium (Na+), chloride (Cl,), nutrients (nitrogen [N], phosphate [PO43,], and potassium [K+]), and enteric bacteria. Ion concentration ranges (in mg/L) were Na+ (46 to 416), Cl, (21 to 618), N (4.7 to 67), PO4 -P (1.4 to 48), and K+ (6.0 to 257). The sources of elevated Na+ and Cl, were human waste and NaCl used in the water softening systems of the houses. Ammonium was usually the dominant inorganic N species, indicating incomplete oxidation of the waste water. Discharge of Na+, Cl,, and nutrients could also have negative impacts on ground water and surface water quality, subsurface and surface aquatic ecosystems, and vegetation. Our characterization of effluent from these waste water treatment systems revealed their generally poor quality and the likelihood that they can contaminate ground water in areas with highly vulnerable aquifers. [source]

Epigean and subterranean ichthyofauna from the São Domingos karst area, Upper Tocantins River basin, Central Brazil

M. E. Bichuette
In a survey of epigean and cave streams in the São Domingos karst area, 38 species were present in the stream reaches, including 10 characiforms, 19 siluriforms, seven gymnotiforms and two perciforms. One species of Astyanax and the new armoured catfish species Parotocinclus were the most common epigean fishes in São Domingos. The most conspicuous non-troglomorphic cave fishes were Hoplerythrinus unitaeniatus, Astyanax sp., Brycon sp. and two species of Imparfinis, with I. hollandi being the most common fish in most caves. São Domingos karst area has the most diverse and abundant Brazilian cavefish fauna, not only in terms of troglobitic species but also in general fish richness, with 22 non-troglomorphic species recorded in caves in addition to five troglobitic ones. Most fishes examined for stomach contents had at least partially full stomachs. The studied fishes were carnivorous, feeding primarily on aquatic insects. Fishes with developed gonads recorded in caves were I. hollandi, Rhamdia quelen, Pseudocetopsis plumbeus, Hoplerythrinus unitaeniatus and Cichlasoma araguaiensis, indicating a potential for reproduction in the subterranean habitat. [source]