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Groundwater Hydrology of a Carolina Bay Wetland Restoration Project

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  052189,  2005 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.19813) @2005
Authors:   Swamy Pati, Rodney L. Huffman, Michael J. Vepraskas
Keywords:   Groundwater, wetlands, drainage, MODFLOW

A 270-hectare, approximately elliptical tract of agricultural land (a Carolina Bay) was purchased by the North Carolina Department of Transportation to convert to wetland. A preliminary water balance that suggested significant groundwater flows entering and leaving the tract motivated this study of the subsurface hydrology. The main objective is to determine the degree to which a ditch around the perimeter of the tract controls the lateral movement of water in the surficial aquifer and whether the perimeter ditch can be managed to control hydraulic trespass. Deep soil cores (up to 13 m) were collected along four 150-m transects perpendicular to the perimeter ditch at the major and minor axes to guide placement of piezometers for monitoring hydraulic heads. Piezometers were installed in five nests of 2-4 on each transect. Piezometer water levels are recorded at 15-minute intervals. Meteorological data is collected with an on-site weather station. In this paper, the observations are summarized and interpreted. This paper also presents MODFLOW simulations of the tract which are used to predict the outcomes for various management strategies for the perimeter ditch.

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