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Journal of Environmental Quality Abstract - Landscape and Watershed Processes

Use of Beryllium-7 to Document Soil Redistribution following Forest Harvest Operations


This article in JEQ

  1. Vol. 35 No. 5, p. 1756-1763
    Received: Oct 27, 2005

    * Corresponding author(s): D.E.Walling@exeter.ac.uk
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  1. Paulina Schullera,
  2. Andrés Irouméb,
  3. Desmond E. Walling *c,
  4. Héctor B. Mancillab,
  5. Alejandra Castilloa and
  6. Rosa E. Trumpera
  1. a Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Austral de Chile, Casilla 567, Valdivia, Chile
    b Facultad de Ciencias Forestales, Universidad Austral de Chile, Casilla 567, Valdivia, Chile
    c Department of Geography, University of Exeter, Amory Building, Rennes Drive, Exeter EX4 4RJ, UK


Rapid and reliable methods for documenting soil erosion associated with forest harvest operations are needed to support the development of best management practices for soil and water conservation. To address this need, the potential for using 7Be measurements to estimate patterns and amounts of soil redistribution associated with individual post-harvest events was explored. The 7Be technique, which was originally developed for use on agricultural land, was employed to estimate soil redistribution associated with a period of heavy rainfall within a harvested forest area located in the Lake Region of Chile (39°44′7″ S, 73°10′39″ W; 22% slope; and mean annual rainfall 2300 mm yr−1). The results provided by the 7Be technique were validated against direct measurements of soil gain or loss during the same period obtained using erosion pins. The information produced by the two approaches was similar. The results of this study demonstrate the potential for using 7Be measurements to document event-based erosion in recently harvested forest areas.

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Copyright © 2006. American Society of Agronomy, Crop Science Society of America, Soil Science SocietyASA, CSSA, SSSA