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Open Access item Runoff generation in an intensively disturbed, abandoned farmland catchment, Central Spanish Pyrenees

Authors:García-Ruiz, José María
Arnáez-Vadillo, José
Beguería, Santiago
Seeger, M.
Martí Bono, Carlos Enrique
Regüés-Muñoz, D.
Lana-Renault, Noemí
White, Sue M.
Keywords:Experimental catchment, Floods, Runoff contributing areas, Farmland abandonment, Central Spanish Pyrenees
Issue Date:Jan-2005
Citation:Catena 59 (1): 79-92 (2005)
Abstract:This paper studies the hydrological response to rainstorm events of a small experimental catchment in the Central Spanish Pyrenees. The Arnás catchment was cultivated until 40 years ago, and then abandoned and affected by plant recolonisation, especially shrubs. A rainfall of a few millimeters is enough to produce a sudden increase in discharge, due most probably to the steep gradients and the small size of the catchment and the extensive areas with low vegetation density and thin soils. The intensity of the response shows a very high variability, depending on the intensity of precipitation and soil humidity conditions before the flood. This paper identifies two types of floods according to the relationships between precipitation and discharge, and confirms that antecedent soil moisture explains much of the response. The shape of the hydrograph, very similar to the hyetograph, suggests that the Arnás catchment is dominated by overland flow processes. However, more intense rainstorms do not generate higher peak flows, thus demonstrating the existence of different runoff-generating areas.
Description:22 Pag., 3 Tabl., 7 Fig.
Publisher version (URL):http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.catena.2004.05.006
Appears in Collections:(IPE) Artículos
(EEAD) Artículos

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