Forest management impacts on stream integrity at varying intensities and spatial scales: Do abiotic effects accumulate spatially?

Abstract

Though effects of forest harvesting on small streams are well documented, little is known about the cumulative effects in downstream systems. The hierarchical nature and longitudinal connectivity of river networks make them fundamentally cumulative, but lateral and vertical connectivity and instream processes can dissipate the downstream transport of water and materials. To elucidate such effects, we investigated how a suite of abiotic indicators changed from small streams to larger downstream sites (n = 6) within three basins ranging in forest management intensity (intensive, extensive, minimal) in New Brunswick (Canada) in the summer and fall of 2017 and 2018. Inorganic sediments, the inorganic/organic ratios and water temperatures significantly increased longitudinally, whereas nutrients and the fluorescence index of dissolved organic carbon (DOC; indication of terrestrial source) decreased. However, some …

Publication
Science of the Total Environment

abstract: “Though effects of forest harvesting on small streams are well documented, little is known about the cumulative effects in downstream systems. The hierarchical nature and longitudinal connectivity of river networks make them fundamentally cumulative, but lateral and vertical connectivity and instream processes can dissipate the downstream transport of water and materials. To elucidate such effects, we investigated how a suite of abiotic indicators changed from small streams to larger downstream sites (n = 6) within three basins ranging in forest management intensity (intensive, extensive, minimal) in New Brunswick (Canada) in the summer and fall of 2017 and 2018. Inorganic sediments, the inorganic/organic ratios and water temperatures significantly increased longitudinally, whereas nutrients and the fluorescence index of dissolved organic carbon (DOC; indication of terrestrial source) decreased. However, some …” authors:


Erik Emilson
Erik Emilson
Research Scientist, Watershed Ecology Team Lead, Associate Editor CJFR

I am interested in how forests support freshwater ecosystem services. My research combines microbial and molecular approaches to undertand how forest productivity and disturbances affect ecosystem functions in headwater streams and lakes.

Scott Capell
Scott Capell
Environmental Technician

Environmental Technician for both field and lab work on environmental effects

David Kreutzweiser
David Kreutzweiser
Research Scientist, Emeritus

NA