Effect of ground cover on splash and sheetwash erosion over a steep forested hillslope: a plot-scale study

Ghahramani, Afshin and Ishikawa, Yoshiharu and Gomi, Takashi and Shiraki, Katsushige and Miyata, Shusuke (2011) Effect of ground cover on splash and sheetwash erosion over a steep forested hillslope: a plot-scale study. Catena, 85 (1). pp. 34-47. ISSN 0341-8162


The contributions and relationships of erosion by splash and overland flow over a steep slope in a Japanese beech forest in plots with different percentages of ground cover were examined. Three erosion plots (2 m wide × 5 m long) with average understory coverage of 1%, 45%, and 94% were installed. Sediment transported by rain splash and by overland flow was sampled separately. For the plots with sparse, moderate, and high understory coverage, the average proportions of splash soil to total soil erosion during the monitoring period were 16%, 32%, and 18%, respectively. A significant correlation between the amount of splash soil and precipitation was found in the plots with 1% and 45% understory coverage, whereas no statistical relationship was identified for the plot with high understory coverage. At the sparse ground cover plot showing the largest sediment movement, the contribution of splash transport decreased with increasing precipitation. The amount of sheetwash erosion was significantly correlated with the amount of splash soil under the condition of sparse ground cover. This relationship was more pronounced during high precipitation events and the rainy season. Splash contribution to the sediment transport was in the range of 0.8%–76.7%, 2.8%–81% and 2.1%–60.8% for plot with high, moderate and low ground cover, respectively. The sparse ground cover showed the largest variation of splash and sheetwash contribution in soil erosion. This variability was due to variation in ground cover and soil surface wetness condition which led to a variation of detachment and non-linear relationship of sheetwash splash.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to Published version, in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Institute for Agriculture and the Environment
Date Deposited: 07 Nov 2016 23:57
Last Modified: 02 Mar 2017 05:23
Uncontrolled Keywords: splash erosion; sheetwash; overland runoff; sediment transportation; forested steep hillslope
Fields of Research : 04 Earth Sciences > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040608 Surfacewater Hydrology
05 Environmental Sciences > 0599 Other Environmental Sciences > 059999 Environmental Sciences not elsewhere classified
05 Environmental Sciences > 0503 Soil Sciences > 050399 Soil Sciences not elsewhere classified
04 Earth Sciences > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040607 Surface Processes
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1016/j.catena.2010.11.005
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/29954

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