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Title: Assessing change in riverine organic matter dynamics in the Hunter River, NSW, over the last 200 years: Implications for stream restoration
Contributor(s): Wolfenden, Benjamin John (author); Mika, Sarah Jessie  (author)orcid ; Boulton, Andrew J  (author); Ryder, Darren  (author)
Publication Date: 2005
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Abstract: Successful river rehabilitation requires the restoration of self-sustaining ecosystem functions. One key function is organic matter cycling, including the sources, transfers and sinks of organic matter as it moves from the catchment, across floodplains, down streams, and exchanges with groundwater in the hyporheic zone. River food webs may depend heavily on organic matter generated in-stream by microbial and algal biofilms whereas flow pulses may import leaf litter from the floodplain. Bars and riffles retain this organic matter while generating diverse microhabitats whose particular biogeochemical conditions favour different suites of microbes. Poor land management has deprived the Hunter River of geomorphic complexity at the broad scale of bars and riffles. This paper reviews historical changes to channel shape and vegetation regime in the Hunter River and the repercussions of these on organic matter dynamics over the last 200 years. We conclude that introduction of wood will partly restore conditions closer to those pre-European settlement and alter hyporheic processes but that organic matter dynamics may never be fully restored.
Publication Type: Conference Publication
Conference Details: 4ASM 2004: 4th Australian Stream Management Conference, Launceston, Australia, 19th - 22nd October, 2004
Source of Publication: Proceedings of the 4th Australian Stream Management Conference: Linking Rivers to Landscapes, p. 697-703
Publisher: Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment
Place of Publication: Hobart, Australia
Fields of Research (FoR) 2008: 060204 Freshwater Ecology
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO) 2008: 960506 Ecosystem Assessment and Management of Fresh, Ground and Surface Water Environments
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: E1 Refereed Scholarly Conference Publication
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Appears in Collections:Conference Publication
School of Environmental and Rural Science

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