Flow measurements around a submerged macrophyte patch in an in-situ flume setup
Faculty of Sciences. Biology
S.l. , 2012
9th International Symposium on Ecohydraulics 2012 at the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, Austria, September 17th - 21st
University of Antwerp
In most aquatic ecosystems, hydrodynamic conditions are a key abiotic factor determining species distribution and aquatic plant abundance. Recently, local differences in hydrodynamic conditions have been shown to be an explanatory mechanism for the patchy pattern of Callitriche platycarpa Kütz. vegetation in lowland rivers. Those patches are often subject to strong hydrodynamic forces as they act as a resistance against the current. A plants ability to tolerate water movement without suffering mechanical damage often relies on minimizing the hydrodynamic forces by avoiding stress. In this paper, we have quantified the behaviour and influence of a C. platycarpa patch in an in situ flume, manipulating the incoming discharge on a single patch. The knowledge obtained helps to understand the plant-flow-sediment interactions that form the basis of the explanatory mechanism for the patchy vegetation pattern.