LAND-USE CHANGE AND TIDAL CREEK SEDIMENTATION IN COASTAL WATERSHEDS OF NORTH CAROLINA Public Deposited

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Last Modified
  • March 21, 2019
Creator
  • Deaton, Charles
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Marine Sciences
Abstract
  • Terrestrial landscape alterations cause changes along the coast, where rivers deliver sediments to estuaries and oceans. In contrast to major rivers, tidal creek watersheds are small, but they are numerous and drain much of the eastern United States’ coastal-estuarine land area. Coastal watersheds are frequently hotspots of development, and in North Carolina, residents have expressed concerns about creeks infilling, becoming unnavigable for boaters and uninhabitable for fish. To understand the relationship between land-use change and creek infilling, sedimentation rates calculated from 210Pb in cores from twelve tidal creeks across North Carolina were compared to changes in watershed land use 1959-2010. Results indicate that land-use change, particularly increasing non-agricultural development, has the potential to drive infilling of tidal creeks, although hydrological conditions impose some limits and are responsible for the partitioning of increased sediment loads between deposition in creeks and export to larger estuaries.
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Advisor
  • Rodriguez, Antonio
  • McKee, Brent
  • Fodrie, Joel
Degree
  • Master of Science
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2018
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