Profiling Groundwater Salt Concentrations in Mangrove Swamps and Tropical Salt Flats

Profiling Groundwater Salt Concentrations in Mangrove Swamps and Tropical Salt Flats The salt concentration of groundwater in mangrove swamps is an important parameter controlling the growth of mangrove species. Extremely high salt concentrations of groundwater in tropical salt flats are responsible for the complete absence of macrophytes. Determining groundwater salt concentrations can be a very time-consuming and laborious process if conventional techniques are used. Typically, groundwater samples must be extracted for later laboratory analysis. In this work, a simple conductivity probe has been developed which may be inserted easily to a depth of 2 m into the sediment. The changes in conductivity of the sediment is due primarily to porewater salt concentration, and thus ground conductivity is useful in determining changes in groundwater salt concentrations. Using the conductivity probe, transects of sediment conductivity can be undertaken quickly. As an example of a possible application of the probe, transects of ground conductivity were taken on a mangrove swamp/saltflat system. The transects show clearly the sharp delineation in conductivity between the salt flat and mangrove swamp due to a change in groundwater salt concentrations. Horizontal and vertical salt concentration gradients of up to 50 g l −1 m −1 and 150 g l −1 m −1 , respectively, were found. Very sharp changes in groundwater salt concentrations at the interface between salt flats and mangroves indicate that the mangroves may be modifying the salinity of the groundwater actively. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Estuarine Coastal and Shelf Science Elsevier

Profiling Groundwater Salt Concentrations in Mangrove Swamps and Tropical Salt Flats

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Publisher
Elsevier
Copyright
Copyright © 1996 Academic Press
ISSN
0272-7714
eISSN
1096-0015
DOI
10.1006/ecss.1996.0092
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The salt concentration of groundwater in mangrove swamps is an important parameter controlling the growth of mangrove species. Extremely high salt concentrations of groundwater in tropical salt flats are responsible for the complete absence of macrophytes. Determining groundwater salt concentrations can be a very time-consuming and laborious process if conventional techniques are used. Typically, groundwater samples must be extracted for later laboratory analysis. In this work, a simple conductivity probe has been developed which may be inserted easily to a depth of 2 m into the sediment. The changes in conductivity of the sediment is due primarily to porewater salt concentration, and thus ground conductivity is useful in determining changes in groundwater salt concentrations. Using the conductivity probe, transects of sediment conductivity can be undertaken quickly. As an example of a possible application of the probe, transects of ground conductivity were taken on a mangrove swamp/saltflat system. The transects show clearly the sharp delineation in conductivity between the salt flat and mangrove swamp due to a change in groundwater salt concentrations. Horizontal and vertical salt concentration gradients of up to 50 g l −1 m −1 and 150 g l −1 m −1 , respectively, were found. Very sharp changes in groundwater salt concentrations at the interface between salt flats and mangroves indicate that the mangroves may be modifying the salinity of the groundwater actively.

Journal

Estuarine Coastal and Shelf ScienceElsevier

Published: Nov 1, 1996

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