State Water Resources Research Institute Program


Project ID: 2007NJ145B
Title: A Quantitative Approach to Linking Temporal Variations of Groundwater Level with Nitrogen Cycling in New Jersey Wetlands
Project Type: Research
Start Date: 3/01/2007
End Date: 2/29/2008
Congressional District: 6th
Focus Categories: Hydrology, Wetlands, Groundwater
Keywords: wetland hydrology, soil hydrology, nitrogen cycling, wetland hydrographs, flashiness, nitrification, denitrification
Principal Investigators: Gimenez, Daniel; Ehrenfeld, Joan G. (Rutgers University)
Federal Funds: $ 30,000
Non-Federal Matching Funds: $ 61,445
Abstract: Wetlands are considered one of the most valuable terrestrial ecosystems because of their multiple functions, including as regulators of biogeochemical cycles and other biospheric processes. Previous research has demonstrated that New Jersey wetlands located in developed areas experience rapid and frequent wet/dry periods, which often results in high rates of net nitrification and more variable rates of denitrification. We propose to apply multifractal and wavelet analyses to existing long-term hydrological records of groundwater depth available for fourteen wetlands in New Jersey with the objective of identifying and classifying the contribution of the different factors controlling wetland hydrology. We also propose to carry out new analyses of soil conditions and N cycling in two sites selected on the basis of the hydrograph analyses with the objective of elucidating the temporal dynamics of the N cycle under contrasting hydrological settings. The information generated by this study will be useful to enhance wetland ecological services by identifying factors driving the hydrology of a site and the impact they have on nitrogen cycling. We consider this project as a pilot study to demonstrate the feasibility and environmental significance of the method, and as a basis for proposals for more comprehensive examination of these objectives.

Progress/Completion Report, PDF

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