Robinson Christopher Thomas

Springs and spring brooks along a river corridor in the Alps (Ova dal Fuorn, Swiss National Park)

Project Number: CH-1787
Project Type: Master
Project Duration: 10/01/2000 - 04/30/2002 project completed
Funding Source: other ,
Project Leader: PD Dr. Christopher Thomas Robinson
Fliessgewässerökologie, Fliessgewässersysteme
Aquatische Ökologie (ECO)
Überlandstrasse 133
8600 Dübendorf
Phone: +41 (0) 58 765 53 17 ; +41 (0) 58 765 51 32
FAX: +41 (0) 58 765 53 15
e-Mail: christopher.robinson(at)

related to this project.
for which the project has a relevance.

Research Areas:

hydrology, limnology, glaciology
environmental sciences

Alpine rivers, spring

The first objective of this study is the completion of a spring inventory along the Spöl river corridor. This includes assessment of spring and spring brook locations and description of terrestrial settings (riparian vegetation), the physico-chemical environment, spring and spring brook morphology, invertebrates and ecosystem properties such as organic matter storage, primary producer biomass and respiration. A second objective comprises assessment of the export of organisms from spring / spring brook systems to the Fuorn River. The last objective is focused on the question whether the springs and spring brooks studied by Nadig (1942) were subject to major changes over time.

Leading questions:
In the Swiss National Park, Nadig (1942) studied five springs and their spring brooks draining into the Fuorn River. Some of these springs differed significantly with respect to water chemistry (dissolved oxygen, sulfate, nitrate and organic matter) and invertebrate communities. The invertebrate inventory of the five springs comprised 160 taxa. Schanz (1983) examined algal communities of 5 spring sites in the same catchment (elevation 1800 – 2000m a.s.l.). He listed 163 algal taxa without diatoms. The 50 m wide active floodplain of the Fuorn River consists of bar sediments reflecting unstable river channel; e.g. algal densities are usually low (Schanz 1983). Unstable bed sediments are also characteristics of most Spöl tributaries, parts of which fall dry during summer. Springs and spring brooks along the Spöl river corridor are presumably an important reservoir for species colonizing the River Spöl after high flow events.

Döring M 2002: Ecological Assessment of Springs and Spring Brooks in the Swiss national park: Combining Fieldwork with Geodesy (GPS/Tachymetry) and GIS. Diploma. EAWAG Dübendorf & Ruhr University Bochunm

Last update: 12/16/16
Source of data: ProClim- Research InfoSystem (1993-2020)
Update the data of project: CH-1787

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