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Article

Effect of Animal Burrows on the Vulnerability of Levees to Concentrated Erosion

Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering University of Padua, Via Ognissanti 39, 35129 Padova, Italy
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Academic Editor: Paolo Mignosa
Water 2022, 14(18), 2777; https://doi.org/10.3390/w14182777
Received: 9 August 2022 / Revised: 25 August 2022 / Accepted: 30 August 2022 / Published: 6 September 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Hydraulics and Hydrodynamics)
Earth dams and levees often offer an attractive habitat for burrowing animals such as porcupines, nutria, badgers, etc. However, their activity may damage the earth structure, potentially leading to catastrophic failures. If the burrow system connects the waterside and the landside, water flows through the pipe and it can start concentrated erosion. This paper shows that the conditions to trigger concentrated erosion can be generated by a local instability mechanism of the landside slope in which the soil cover between the cavity and the surface is expulsed due to increasing water pressure. A simplified model based on the limit equilibrium method is proposed and compared with bi-dimensional and three-dimensional finite element analyses. This mechanism can better explain real failure cases. The results provide useful suggestions for the assessment of levee vulnerability to animal burrows and for the management of water retaining structures. View Full-Text
Keywords: concentrated erosion; animal burrow; levee stability concentrated erosion; animal burrow; levee stability
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ceccato, F.; Malvestio, S.; Simonini, P. Effect of Animal Burrows on the Vulnerability of Levees to Concentrated Erosion. Water 2022, 14, 2777. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14182777

AMA Style

Ceccato F, Malvestio S, Simonini P. Effect of Animal Burrows on the Vulnerability of Levees to Concentrated Erosion. Water. 2022; 14(18):2777. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14182777

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ceccato, Francesca, Stefano Malvestio, and Paolo Simonini. 2022. "Effect of Animal Burrows on the Vulnerability of Levees to Concentrated Erosion" Water 14, no. 18: 2777. https://doi.org/10.3390/w14182777

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