Changes in Sediment Accumulation Rate in an Oxbow Lake Following Late 19th Century Clearing of Land for Agricultural Use: A 210Pb, 137Cs, and 14C Study in Mississippi, USA
Humphreys County Mississippi
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CitationDavidson, G. R., Carnley, M., Lange, T., Galicki, S. J., & Douglas, A. (2004). Changes in sediment accumulation rate in an oxbow lake following late 19th century clearing of land for agricultural use: a 210Pb, 137Cs, and 14C study in Mississippi, USA. Radiocarbon, 46(2), 755-764.
DescriptionFrom the 18th International Radiocarbon Conference held in Wellington, New Zealand, September 1-5, 2003.
AbstractSediment cores were collected from 2 sites in the forested fringe of an oxbow lake surrounded by land that was converted from forest to agricultural use in the late 19th century. The 2 sampling areas were selected to represent areas of high (West site) and low (east site) current sediment accumulation rates, based on distance from a perennially discharging stream. Modern (post settlement and land clearing) sediment accumulation rates were calculated using 210Pb and 137Cs on bulk sediment samples from 2 cores from each site. Two additional cores were collected from each site for radiocarbon analysis of twig cellulose with the assumption that most twigs in the sediment within the forested fringe fell from overhead and are contemporaneous with the sediment. Only the West site, however, yielded sufficient identifiable twig material for analysis. Modern sediment accumulation rates based on 210P and 137Cs fall between 0.2-0.4 cm/yr at the East site, and 0.7-1.3 cm/yr at the West site (nearest the stream inlet), with approximate agreement between the 210Pb and 137Cs methods. Modern sediment accumulation rate based on bomb-pulse 14C activity of twigs from cores from the West site is approximately 1.0 cm/yr, in agreement with the 210Pb and 137Cs results results. Historic sediment accumulation rates were estimated at the West site using twigs from deeper intervals with pre-bomb 14C activity. Sediment covering approximately 1000 yr of pre-settlement sediment accumulation exhibited evidence of minor bioturbation or in-washing of reworked material, but with a clearly lower accumulation rate of less than 0.1 cm/yr.