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Ecological Effects of Heather Burning: I. Water Infiltration, Moisture Retention and Porosity of Surface Soil

A. U. Mallik, C. H. Gimingham and A. A. Rahman
Journal of Ecology
Vol. 72, No. 3 (Nov., 1984), pp. 767-776
DOI: 10.2307/2259530
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2259530
Page Count: 10
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Ecological Effects of Heather Burning: I. Water Infiltration, Moisture Retention and Porosity of Surface Soil
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Abstract

(1) Measurements were made of water infiltration, water retention and porosity of soils of burned and unburned plots of heathland. (2) On the burned plot the rate of infiltration was decreased by up to 74% compared to the unburned plot. (3) Moisture retention in the top soil of the burned plot was increased considerably compared to the unburned plot. (4) Mercury intrusion porosimetry (MIP) was used to investigate the porosity of the surface layers of soil following burning of the vegetation. An explanation of the results, based on the incorporation of ash particles, accords with the observed effects upon water infiltration and retention.

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