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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

Did you know?

That karst plain is 1. large flat surface in karst formed by erosion and corrosion [20]. 2. a plain on which closed depressions, subterranean drainage, and other karst features may be developed. also called karst plateau [10]. synonyms: (french.) plateau karstique; (german.) karstebene, karstrandebene, korrosionsflache; (greek.) karstikon pedhion; (italian.) piano carsico; (russian.) karstovaja ravnina; (spanish.) llanura karstica; (turkish.) karst ovasi; (yugoslavian.) krska zaravan, povrs, kraski ravnik. see also marginal polje.?

Checkout all 2699 terms in the KarstBase Glossary of Karst and Cave Terms

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
See all featured articles
Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for cave environment (Keyword) returned 108 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 108
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, , Bontognali Tomaso R. R. , D’angeli Ilenia M. , Tisato Nicola, Vasconcelos Crisogono, Bernasconi Stefano M. , Gonzales Esteban R. G. , De Waele Jo

Unusual speleothems resembling giant mushrooms occur in Cueva Grande de Santa
Catalina, Cuba. Although these mineral buildups are considered a natural heritage, their
composition and formation mechanism remain poorly understood. Here we characterize
their morphology and mineralogy and present a model for their genesis. We propose that
the mushrooms, which are mainly comprised of calcite and aragonite, formed during four
different phases within an evolving cave environment. The stipe of the mushroom is an
assemblage of three well-known speleothems: a stalagmite surrounded by calcite rafts
that were subsequently encrusted by cave clouds (mammillaries). More peculiar is the
cap of the mushroom, which is morphologically similar to cerebroid stromatolites and
thrombolites of microbial origin occurring in marine environments. Scanning electron
microscopy (SEM) investigations of this last unit revealed the presence of fossilized
extracellular polymeric substances (EPS)—the constituents of biofilms and microbial
mats. These organic microstructures are mineralized with Ca-carbonate, suggesting that
the mushroom cap formed through a microbially-influenced mineralization process. The
existence of cerebroid Ca-carbonate buildups forming in dark caves (i.e., in the absence
of phototrophs) has interesting implications for the study of fossil microbialites preserved
in ancient rocks, which are today considered as one of the earliest evidence for life on
Earth.


Three new species of Cymbella from Mammoth cave, Kentucky., 1966, Van Landingham Sam L.
During an investigation of the diatom flora of Mammoth Cave, Kentucky three Cymbella species were noted which could not be identified with any yet described forms. This paper contains a taxonomic description of the three new species: Cymbella clausii, Cymbella gerloffii, Cymbella hohnii. A common feature of all three species is the rather broad central area which may have been the result of a special adaptation to the cave environment.

The Cave Environment, 1969, Poulson Thomas L. , White William B. ,

Temperature and relative humidity responses of two Texas cave-adapted Millipedes, Cambala speobia (Cambalida: Cambalidae) and Speodesmus bicornourus (Polydesmida: Vanhoeffeniidae)., 1972, Bull Eddie, Mitchell Robert W.
The temperature and relative humidity preferences and tolerances of two Texas species of cave-adapted millipedes, Cambala speobia (Chamberlin) and Speodesmus bicornourus Causey, were studied. Both species showed gross preferences when tested in gradient chambers for temperatures and relative humidities approximating those of their cave environments. But C. speobia, the less adapted species morphologically, was the more selective of the two species for such conditions. S. bicornourus was far less tolerant of elevated temperatures and reduced relative humidities than was C. speobia. Discussed is a possible reason why a terrestrial troglobite like S. bicornourus would combine intolerance with a lessened ability to perceive those factors to which it is intolerant. Discussed also are the possible causes of the present distribution of Cambala and Speodesmus in the caves of central Texas.

Temperature and relative humidity responses of two Texas cave-adapted Millipedes, Cambala speobia (Cambalida: Cambalidae) and Speodesmus bicornourus (Polydesmida: Vanhoeffeniidae)., 1972, Bull Eddie, Mitchell Robert W.
The temperature and relative humidity preferences and tolerances of two Texas species of cave-adapted millipedes, Cambala speobia (Chamberlin) and Speodesmus bicornourus Causey, were studied. Both species showed gross preferences when tested in gradient chambers for temperatures and relative humidities approximating those of their cave environments. But C. speobia, the less adapted species morphologically, was the more selective of the two species for such conditions. S. bicornourus was far less tolerant of elevated temperatures and reduced relative humidities than was C. speobia. Discussed is a possible reason why a terrestrial troglobite like S. bicornourus would combine intolerance with a lessened ability to perceive those factors to which it is intolerant. Discussed also are the possible causes of the present distribution of Cambala and Speodesmus in the caves of central Texas.

The Migration of Cave Arthropods Across The Nullarbor Plain, Southern Australia, 1972, Richards, Aola, M.

The Nullarbor Plain is a low plateau of Tertiary limestone covering an area of 194,175 km2 in southern Australia. It has a semi-arid climate and supports a stunted vegetation. Ninety-five species of arthropods have been recorded from 47 Nullarbor caves, and many of these species are widely distributed across the Plain. Two possible explanations for their distribution are discussed. Subterranean migration may occur through the widespread zone of small interconnecting cavities in the Nullarbor Limestone, but this has not yet been confirmed. While cave arthropods are confined to the cool, moist cave environment during the day, they have been observed at night in cave entrances, in dolines and on the surface of the Plain. Cave "breathing", similarity in cave and epigean climate at night, strong winds, occasional heavy rain and numerous animal burrows all contribute towards favourable conditions for surface migration.


Ecological and evolutive aspects of the communities of temperate and tropical caves: observations on the biological cycles of some species of Ptomaphagus (Coleoptera Catopidae)., 1973, Sbordoni Marina Cobolli, Sbordoni Valerio
Differences between tropical and temperate cave communities are an important topic in the actual biospeleological thinking. Among the most striking differences is the paucity of terrestrial troglobites in tropical caves. This fact may depend on the higher energy input into tropical caves which lessens the selection pressures for energy-economizing troglobite adaptations. Consequently evolutionary rates would be slowed in tropical caves and, in a date group, troglobites would appear later in such caves than in temperate ones with lower energy input. In order to investigate this point the authors studied the degree of adaptation to the cave environment in two species of Mexican Ptomaphagus which, being phylogenetically related, probably descend from the same epigean ancestor. Among these species the first one, P. troglomexicanus Peck, lives in a typical temperate cave (i.e. cold, high altitude cave, with scarce food supply) in the Sierra de Guatemala (Tamaulipas), the other one, P. spelaeus (Bilimek), populates tropical caves (i.e. warm, lowland cave, with rich food supply) in the State of Guerrero. In addition a comparison is made with P. pius Seidlitz, an epigean species from southern Europe. The results show a striking difference between P. troglomexicanus on a side and the other two species. Differences chiefly concern morphological features such as relative antenna length, structural complexity (i.e. the number of sensilla) of the antenna chemioreceptor organs in the 70, 90, 100 segments, degree of reduction of eye, wing and pigmentation and physiological ones such as the length of the life cycle. The possible causes of these differences are discussed. According to the authors these differences appear due to the different selection pressures acting in the two types of caves. In addition a comparison between the "tropical cave" species, P. spelaeus, with the epigean one, P. pius, does not point out the differences that one could expect by the diverse ecology of these species. These observations support the idea that evolutionary rates in cavernicoles are strongly affected by the ecology of the cave, mainly depending on the degree of energy input, and are poorly consistent with the hypothesis that mutations affecting degenerative processes are selectively neutral.

Ecological and evolutive aspects of the communities of temperate and tropical caves: observations on the biological cycles of some species of Ptomaphagus (Coleoptera Catopidae)., 1973, Sbordoni Marina Cobolli, Sbordoni Valerio
Differences between tropical and temperate cave communities are an important topic in the actual biospeleological thinking. Among the most striking differences is the paucity of terrestrial troglobites in tropical caves. This fact may depend on the higher energy input into tropical caves which lessens the selection pressures for energy-economizing troglobite adaptations. Consequently evolutionary rates would be slowed in tropical caves and, in a date group, troglobites would appear later in such caves than in temperate ones with lower energy input. In order to investigate this point the authors studied the degree of adaptation to the cave environment in two species of Mexican Ptomaphagus which, being phylogenetically related, probably descend from the same epigean ancestor. Among these species the first one, P. troglomexicanus Peck, lives in a typical temperate cave (i.e. cold, high altitude cave, with scarce food supply) in the Sierra de Guatemala (Tamaulipas), the other one, P. spelaeus (Bilimek), populates tropical caves (i.e. warm, lowland cave, with rich food supply) in the State of Guerrero. In addition a comparison is made with P. pius Seidlitz, an epigean species from southern Europe. The results show a striking difference between P. troglomexicanus on a side and the other two species. Differences chiefly concern morphological features such as relative antenna length, structural complexity (i.e. the number of sensilla) of the antenna chemioreceptor organs in the 70, 90, 100 segments, degree of reduction of eye, wing and pigmentation and physiological ones such as the length of the life cycle. The possible causes of these differences are discussed. According to the authors these differences appear due to the different selection pressures acting in the two types of caves. In addition a comparison between the "tropical cave" species, P. spelaeus, with the epigean one, P. pius, does not point out the differences that one could expect by the diverse ecology of these species. These observations support the idea that evolutionary rates in cavernicoles are strongly affected by the ecology of the cave, mainly depending on the degree of energy input, and are poorly consistent with the hypothesis that mutations affecting degenerative processes are selectively neutral.

Human impact on the Raj'' Cave in the Holy Cross Mountains (Gry Swi?tokrzyskie). [in Polish], 1977, Rubinowski, Zbigniew

The fine structure of Hamann's organ in Leptodirus hohenwarti, a highly specialised cave bathysciinae (Coleoptera, Catopidae)., 1978, Accordi Fiorenza, Sbordoni Valerio
Hamann's organ in Leptodirus hohenwarti a highly specialized cave Bathysciinae, has been studied under the TEM, SEM and light microscope. This receptor organ located in the 7th, 9th and 10th antennal articles and previously referred to as the "vesicule olfactive" and as the "antennal organ" or "antennal vesicle", reaches its highest degree of structural complexity in leptodirus. This paper attempts to establish some degree of synonymy among the terms used by earlier authors in describing the various antennal parts and sensilla. Five types of sensilla to be found in the organ are described, namely cribrose-stick sensilla, cribrose-utricular sensilla, star-shaped sensilla, claviform sensilla and branching setae. Comparisons within Bathysciinae species and among the latter and other subfamilies of Catopidae reveal differences in the number of vesicles and in the number and structures of sensilla, these differences appear to depend on i) the degree of phylogenetic relationships among taxa and 2) the degree of specialization to cave environment. The considerable complexity of Hamann's organ, unrivalled by other insects organs, apart from light receptors, suggests that it has a plurality of functions. Its hygroreceptor role, supported by recent experimental work, is discussed here.

Humidity responses and the role of Hamann's organ of cavernicolous Bathysciinae (Coleoptera Catopidae)., 1978, Luccarelli Marco, Sbordoni Valerio
The humidity responses of Bathysciola derosasi and Leptodirus hohenwarti, two species of troglobitic Bathysciinae showing different degrees of adaptation to cave environment, have been studied. Intact and antennectomised subjects were tested using choice-chambers with various combinations of relative humidity alternatives (i.e. 20-100%, 50-100%, 90-100%, 50-90% and, as controls, 100-100%) to investigate the role played by the sense organs situated on the 7th, 9th and 10th antenna segments. The results show that intact-antenna subjects of both species are very sensitive to humidity gradients and that their intensity of reaction varies according to the intensity of stimulus, as previously reported by Argano, Sbordoni and Cobolli Sbordoni (1969). The antennectomy experiments show that receptors situated on the 7th, 9th and 10th antenna segments (Hamann's organ) are involved in hygroreception. In Leptodirus. insects antennectomised below the 9th segment show a reduced intensity of reaction, while those antennectomised below the 7th segment show no positive response at all. This seems to indicate that receptors in the 9th and 10th antennal segments have additive roles beyond that of the 7th. Further research is needed to ascertain whether the antennal organs of Bathysciinae may have yet further additional sensory roles (e.g. chemioreception) as their complex structure suggests.

Histoplasmosis and Australian Cave Environments, 1985, Harden T. J. , Hunt P. J.

Histoplasma Capsulatum is a fungus which is the causative agent of histoplasmosis, a disease of worldwide distribution. The prevalence of this disease and its manifestation in clinical cases of disease in humans are described. The association of this fungus with dung enriched soil is discussed, particularly in relation to caves which are frequented by colonial bats. Histoplasma capsulatum has been associated on several occasions with the respiratory form of Histoplasmosis in Australia but has only been isolated from the Church Cave. It is suggested that although Histoplasma capsulatum in Australia has been found in association with only Miniopterus schreibersii, other genera of bats may also harbour this fungus.


Measurement of Small Changes in Pressure of Cave Air Using an Air Barometer, 1988, Halbert, Erik

This paper describes an extremely simple form of barometer which is capable of measuring changes in air pressure of less than five pascals. The principle of operation, construction and use are described and examples are given of its use both inside and outside the cave environment.


Use of Electronic Data-Logging Equipment to Monitor Hydrologic Parameters in a Humid Cave Environment in Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota, 1989, Greene, Earl A.

Laboratory studies of predatory behaviour in two subspecies of the Carabid cave beetle: Neaphaenops tellkampfi., 1990, Griffith David M.
Comparative studies on the foraging behaviour of Neaphaenops tellkampfi tellkampfi and N. t. meridionalis demonstrated adaptation to different environments. The southern subspecies N. t. meridionalis, which is found in wet muddy caves where cave cricket eggs are unlikely prey, did not locate buried cricket eggs and dug fewer and less accurate holes in the lab than the nominate subspecies. N. t. tellkampfi, which reaches high densities in sandy deep cave environments where cricket eggs are the only viable prey, gained significantly greater weight than meridionalis when presented buried cricket eggs as prey. There was no difference with respect to weight change between the subspecies in the presence of Ptomaphagus larvae. N. t. meridionalis gained weight at a significantly greater rate than the nominate subspecies with enchytraeid worms as prey. Enchytraeid worms represent the natural prey most likely to be encountered by N. t. meridionalis. 25% of beetle holes were dug deep enough to potentially located buried cricket eggs. Since Hubbell and Nortons' morphological data on the relationship between cricket ovipositor length and beetle predation have some problems with sample sizes and minor assumptions I conclude that there are no unequivocal data that support the possibility of coevolution between Neaphaenops and Hadenoecus.

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