Student Competition

Oral

397798 - Analyzing Suspended Sediment Transport in Catalpa Creek

Wednesday, June 6
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Lakeshore A
Co-Authors: James Grafe, Starkville, MS – Mississippi State University; John Ramirez-Avila, Starkville, MS – Mississippi State University

Water quality data from a section of the main channel of Catalpa Creek in Starkville, MS are being collected weekly from fourteen different locations within the upper 4 miles along the main stream channel in an attempt to quantify the change of water quality with respect to time and location along the stream. The water temperature, specific conductivity, total dissolved solids concentration, salinity concentration, pH, turbidity, dissolved oxygen percent, and dissolved oxygen concentration of Catalpa Creek are the parameters measured at each location. Results showed how the stream is affected by the seasonal change from summer to fall, road construction activity, a beaver dam, and rainfall. An increase in pH, turbidity, and dissolved oxygen was observed near the construction activity. Sediments and chemicals from the road construction appeared to increase streamflow, pH, and turbidity. At the location of the transect 1.5 miles, a beaver dam reduced the stream’s flow significantly, inducing reductions in pH and dissolved oxygen and an increase in turbidity. After a rainfall event, flow increase caused an extreme increase in turbidity to be observed, while all the other water quality measurements decreased. The trends produced by the change of Catalpa Creek’s water quality data with respect to time and location within the stream are deeply analyzed in attempt to understand how Catalpa Creek is influenced by its surrounding environment. Results from this study are used to evaluate stream functionality and propose a stream restoration design.

James E. Steele, Jr.

undergraduate student
Mississippi State University

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