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Open AccessArticle

On-Site Water and Wind Erosion Experiments Reveal Relative Impact on Total Soil Erosion

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Physical Geography, Trier University, 54286 Trier, Germany
2
Physical Geography and Environmental Change, University of Basel, 4056 Basel, Switzerland
3
Soil Erosion and Degradation Research Group, Department of Geography, University of Valencia, 46010 Valencia, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Geosciences 2019, 9(11), 478; https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences9110478
Received: 23 August 2019 / Revised: 24 October 2019 / Accepted: 10 November 2019 / Published: 14 November 2019
The relative impact of water and wind on total erosion was investigated by means of an experimental-empirical study. Wind erosion and water erosion were measured at five different sites: (1) Mediterranean fallow, (2) Mediterranean orchard, (3) wheat field, (4) vineyard and (5) sand substrate. Mean erosion rates ranged from 1.55 to 618 g·m−2·h−1 for wind and from 0.09 to 133.90 g·m−2·h−1 for rain eroded material over all tested sites. Percentages (%) of eroded sediment for wind and rain, respectively, were found to be 2:98 on Mediterranean fallow, 11:89 on Mediterranean orchard, 3:97 on wheat field, 98:2 on vineyard and 99:1 on sand substrate. For the special case of soil surface crust destroyed by goat trampling, the measured values emphasize a strong potential impact of herding on total soil erosion. All sites produced erosion by wind and rain, and relations show that both erosive forces may have an impact on total soil erosion depending on site characteristics. The results indicate a strong need to focus on both wind and water erosion particularly concerning soils and substrates in vulnerable environments. Measured rates show a general potential erosion depending on recent developments of land use and climate change and may raise awareness of scientist, farmers and decision makers about potential impact of both erosive forces. Knowledge about exact relationship is key for an adapted land use management, which has great potential to mitigate degradation processes related to climate change. View Full-Text
Keywords: soil erosion; wind erosion; rain erosion; geomorphological experiments soil erosion; wind erosion; rain erosion; geomorphological experiments
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Marzen, M.; Iserloh, T.; Fister, W.; Seeger, M.; Rodrigo-Comino, J.; Ries, J.B. On-Site Water and Wind Erosion Experiments Reveal Relative Impact on Total Soil Erosion. Geosciences 2019, 9, 478.

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