Five hydrologic studies conducted by or in cooperation with the Center for Forested Wetlands Research, U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service Center for Forested Wetlands Research has conducted or cooperated in studies designed to improve understanding of fundamental hydrologic and biogeochemical processes that link aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Five of these studies are discussed here. The first is based on observations made on long-term experimental watersheds established in the 1960s on the Forest Service Santee Experimental Forest in South Carolina. It quantifies the soil moisture dynamics, flow regimes, and water chemistry of low-gradient forested wetlands. The second study is being conducted in cooperation with North Carolina State University. It is a long-term project aimed at quantifying the effects of various water management and silvicultural management practices on hydrology and water quality at the Weyerhaeuser Company’s managed pine forest in Carteret County, North Carolina. The third study is a long-term ecosystem study on MeadWestvaco’s Coosawhatchie River bottomland hardwood site in South Carolina. It addresses questions related to public concerns about the need for protection, restoration, and sustainable management of forested wetlands. The fourth study, which was conducted between 1997 and 2000, examined the hydrology and water quality of intensively managed short-rotation woody crop plantations on International Paper’s Trice experimental forest in the upper Coastal Plain of South Carolina. A fifth study was conducted between 1996 and 2004 at MeadWestvaco’s Carolina bay site in the South Carolina upper Coastal Plain; it assessed the surface-water and ground-water interactions between Carolina bays and their surrounding uplands. Recommendations are provided for using knowledge gained through these and other studies as a basis for expanding needed hydrologic research with collaborators to address four major areas of water-related issues in the Southeast.