Mapping landscape-level hydrological connectivity of headwater wetlands to downstream waters: A geospatial modeling approach - Part 1

Yeo I., Lang M. W., Lee S., McCarty G. W., Sadeghi A. M., Yetemen Ö., ...More

SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, vol.653, pp.1546-1556, 2019 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 653
  • Publication Date: 2019
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.11.238
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1546-1556
  • Keywords: Wetlands, Hydrological connectivity, Remote sensing, GIS, Geospatial modeling, Catchment hydrology, GEOGRAPHICALLY ISOLATED WETLANDS, COASTAL-PLAIN, GROUNDWATER, LANDSAT, STREAMS, INUNDATION, SCIENCE, SCALE
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: No


Headwater wetlands affect ecosystem integrity of downstream waters; however, many wetlands - particularly geographically isolated wetlands (GIWs) - continue to be at risk. A significant portion of US federal policy is based on the jurisdictional status of wetlands, which is partly determined by the relationship between wetlands and downstream waters, including the cumulative impact of wetlands on those waters. We present a novel multi- phase geospatial modeling method to help elucidate hydrological relationship between GIWs and downstream waters at the landscape scale. The presented approach in this study used inundation maps derived from time series remotely sensed data between 1985 and 2010, weather and hydrological records, and ancillary geospatial data including information from the US Fish and Wildlife Service NationalWetlands Inventory (NWI). The study site was a headwater catchment (292 km(2)) of the Choptank River Basin, located in the Mid- Atlantic region of USA, which contained a large number of Delmarva bays. The results showed inundation extent within GIWs varied, in aggregate, in response toweather variability (r=0.58; p-value=0.05), and waswell correlated with streamflow (r=0.81; p-value < 0.01) and base flow (r =0.57; p-value < 0.1) conditions. The relationship between inundation patterns and stream discharge also varied with NWI hydrologic modifiers. The GIWs with water regime characterized by longer durations of flooding exhibited stronger correlations with stream discharge, but those GIWs with shorter durations of flooding were less correlated with stream discharge. This analysis suggests themutual reliance (i.e., connection) of wetlands and streams on groundwater. GIWs appeared to function in aggregate, and it is likely that the combined effect of these wetlands significantly influenced the functioning of downstream waters. (c) 2018 Elsevier B. V. All rights reserved.