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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. ...

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. ...

Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 11 Jul, 2012
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 passage is 1. broadly, a passage is any negotiable part of cave system, though the usage is commonly restricted to those elements that tend towards the horizontal rather than vertical or sub-vertical sections. cave passages very in size and shape, with the latter relating to the mode of origin and providing evidence of the nature of cave development mechanisms. perhaps the largest passage in the world is deer cave, which is up to 170m wide and 120m high, in the mulu karst of sarawak [9]. 2. a comparatively small underground opening made along fractures, fissures, and bedding-plane partings by running water but through which it is possible to pass [20]. 3. in a cave, the opening between rooms or chambers [10]. synonyms: (french.) galerie; (german.) gallerie, stollen; (greek.) ypohios thiothos; (italian.) cunicolo, galleria; (russian.) hod; (spanish.) galeria; (turkish.) gecit; (yugoslavian.) galerija. see also chamber; room.?

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

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KarstBase a bibliography database in karst and cave science.

Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
Engineering challenges in Karst, Stevanović, Zoran; Milanović, Petar
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Geochemical and mineralogical fingerprints to distinguish the exploited ferruginous mineralisations of Grotta della Monaca (Calabria, Italy), Dimuccio, L.A.; Rodrigues, N.; Larocca, F.; Pratas, J.; Amado, A.M.; Batista de Carvalho, L.A.
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
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Search in KarstBase

Your search for function (Keyword) returned 275 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 275
Significance and origin of very large regulating power of some karst aquifers in the Middle East. Implication on karst aquifer classification, , Elhakim M, Bakalowicz M,
SummaryKarst aquifers are the main groundwater resource in Lebanon as well as in most Mediterranean countries. Most of them are not exploited in a sustainable way, partly because their characteristics remain unknown. Karst aquifers are so complex that the assessment of their resource and their exploitable storage requires an analysis of their whole functioning, particularly by analysing the spring hydrograph. Among all various methods, the method proposed by Mangin aims to characterize at the same time the recharge conditions and the storage and recession of the saturated zone by analyzing the spring hydrograph. This method defines two parameters, the infiltration delay i, and the regulating power k which are the roots of a classification of karst systems. This classification makes the distinction between karst and porous aquifers considering the value of the regulating power. k is assumed to be lower than 0.5 in karst, and between 0.5 and 1 for all other aquifers, 1 being the upper limit.The study of karst aquifers in Lebanon shows values of k > 0.5, and even 1; former data from the literature show that other karst springs in Middle East have comparable characteristics. In fact, what is not considered by Mangin and others, k is equivalent to a mean residence time in years of water in the saturated zone. So long residence times are normally observed in poorly karstified aquifers, or containing abandoned, not functioning karstification. The geological framework in which the studied springs are located in fact shows that these aquifers have been subject to a long, complex evolution, as a consequence of the base level rising. This rising produced the flooding of the successive karst drainage network, which does not really function anymore and provides a large storage capacity to the aquifer. The very interesting properties of these aquifers make them prime targets for fulfilling the increasing needs of water

The Aggitis karst system, Eastern Macedonia, Greece: Hydrologic functioning and development of the karst structure, , Novel Jean Paul, Dimadi Agoro, Zervopoulou Anna, Bakalowicz Michel,
SummaryThe Aggitis karst system developed in the marbles of the Rhodope massif. The conditions of the development of its karst drainage network are determined from the geological and geomorphologic settings by means of a microstructural analysis, following Eraso's method. This analysis shows that the karst conduit network intensely developed in the western part of the mountain Falakro where the majority of the open fractures oriented in the same direction as the hydraulic gradient, while the two directions are perpendicular in its eastern part drained by the spring of Drama.The behaviour of the system was analysed by means of hydrodynamic and water geochemical techniques. Despite the extension of the cave system and of the favourable development conditions of conduits, the functioning appears complex, with a significant storage, and a slow infiltration as well as an easy drainage. On the contrary the Drama karst system, characterised by a low variability in its hydrological and geochemical characteristics does not show any karst functioning.In the Aggitis karst system the initial groundwater flow conditions in combination with the aperture planes of which the directions are in agreement with the hydraulic gradient, favoured the rapid development of a drainage network system. The recharge from a large surface catchment area on non-karstic rocks, through swallow holes in a wide polje contributed to increase the groundwater flow through the karst part of the system, facilitating the development of the conduits

On subterranean confluences., 1965, Bleahu Marcian
The development of a subterranean drainage system depends on the way in which subterranean confluences between different rivers can be formed. Different from surface, in which confluences are determined by processes related to the surface runoff of water, in subterranean karst confluences have a random pattern and are related to certain circumstances independent of the underground flow. These conditions are: pre-existence of circulation ways and the way they are distributed in space. At these the peculiar processes of subterranean karst flow determined by the flow under pressure, the only one that can explain the systematic appearance of confluences, have to be added. In function of these parameters a morphogenetic classification of subterranean confluences is given.

Diatoms from Mammoth Cave, Kentucky., 1965, Van Landingham Sam L.
Samples collected in Mammoth Cave, Kentucky, revealed the presence of a diversified but not too abundant diatom community in the cave. As the material was not subjected to culturing experiments but was investigated immediately after arrival, both in native and permanent preparations, it was possible to: 1. ascertain that the majority of the diatoms contained well developed, apparently healthy and functioning chloroplasts and 2. to get a rough estimate of the actual number of specimens present in a microhabitat. The identifications resulted in the recognition of 16 diatom taxa of which possibly 4 are new to science. Further studies are, however, required to ascertain this point.

Breeding Caves and Maternity Colonies of the Bent-Winged Bat In South-Eastern Australia, 1966, Dwyer P. D. , Hamiltonsmith E.

Eight breeding Caves of Miniopterus schreibersi (Kuhl) are described from South Australia, Victoria, New South Wales and Southern Queensland, in terms of their structure, the location of nursery areas at which juveniles are deposited after birth, and their physical environments. Maternity colonies are found at these caves through spring, summer and early autumn. Established colonies range from about 15,000 to 200,000 bats at peak size. These individuals are predominantly adult females and their young. Adult males are conspicuous only at the single South Australian breeding cave. Births occur from approximately the beginning of December to mid-January at all colonies except that in South Australia, where a birth period is evident between mid-October to late-November. Artificial warming, as a consequence of bat activity, appears to be characteristic of these Miniopterus schreibersi breeding caves. It is suggested that this may have functional significance in facilitating adequate development of juveniles, and that the habit could be a reflection of the tropical ancestry of this species.


Murray Cave, Cooleman Plain, New South Wales, 1966, Jennings, J. N.

Murray Cave is an almost horizontal former outflow cave, which is now on the brink of inactivity. A heavily decorated upper branch functioned during the first outflow phase and the present inactive entrance succeeded it as the outlet point. Both are at the level of a low aggradational terrace of the North Branch of Cave Creek outside the cave; this probably belongs to a Pleistocene cold period. An undecorated lower branch provided the third phase outlet, which still functions occasionally when water rises up a water trap at the inner end of the main passage and flows along that passage into it. The entrance chamber has angular gravel fill due to frost shattering, which post-dates the development of the lower branch passage and belongs to a late Pleistocene cold period. Evidence of free surface stream action predominates in the cave but shallow phreatic conditions must have contributed to its development.


Drought and Murray Cave, Cooleman Plain, 1969, Jennings J. N. , Nankivell I. , Pratt C. , Curtis R. , Mendum J.

The drought culminating in 1967-68 opened water-traps in Murray Cave, thus permitting the re-exploration and survey in January 1968, of a further 1,000 feet of the main passage. Previous explorations, of which oral tradition persisted, are known to have taken place in 1902-3 and some details of the early visitors are presented. The characteristics of the extension are predominantly shallow phreatic in nature and about half of it episodically functioning in this way at the present time; the water-traps along it are inverted siphons in the strict sense and located at the sharpest changes in cave direction. The exploration limit consists of a rockfall beneath a doline, which appears, therefore, to be at least in part a collapse doline. Beneath two other dolines the cave has no sign of collapse, though tall avens reach towards the surface; these dolines are due to surface solution only. The forward part of the cave is overlain by a short, steep dry valley; the relationship between the two remains problematic but there is good reason not to regard the dry valley as the determinant of the cave's location. The evidence is now stronger for an earlier hypothesis that the cave was formerly the outflow cave of nearby River Cave, a perennially active stream cave. It also seems likely that the episodic activity of Murray Cave is due to flood overflow from River Cave. The hydrological regime of the cave is compared with precipitation records of the nearby stations. The episodic flow through the cave does not require an abnormally wet winter; it can follow fairly quickly after complete emptying of the water-traps and approaches an annual event. Draining of the water-traps is a much less frequent event, but whether a series of low rainfall years is necessary, or a single pronouncedly dry year is sufficient to achieve this, cannot be determined from available data. On either count, it seems probable that the cave opened up two or more times between the known occasions of 1902-3 and 1968 in the period 1909-53 when the cave was visited infrequently.


Distribution and dispersion of the troglobitic Carabid Beetle Rhadine subterranea, 1971, Mitchell Robert W.
Intracave distribution and dispersion patterns within a population of the troglobitic carabid beetle Rhadine subterranea were studied. Distribution was markedly heterogeneous, the beetles being almost entirely restricted to substrata of deep, uncompacted silt. Dispersion of the beetles on the silt substrata did not depart from random expectation. It is shown, however, that this is a functionally emergent pattern resulting from an intrasex repulsion related to feeding which tends to produce regularity counterbalanced by an intersex attraction related to reproduction which tends to produce contagion.

Distribution and dispersion of the troglobitic Carabid Beetle Rhadine subterranea, 1971, Mitchell Robert W.
Intracave distribution and dispersion patterns within a population of the troglobitic carabid beetle Rhadine subterranea were studied. Distribution was markedly heterogeneous, the beetles being almost entirely restricted to substrata of deep, uncompacted silt. Dispersion of the beetles on the silt substrata did not depart from random expectation. It is shown, however, that this is a functionally emergent pattern resulting from an intrasex repulsion related to feeding which tends to produce regularity counterbalanced by an intersex attraction related to reproduction which tends to produce contagion.

Observations at the Blue Waterholes, March 1965 - April 1969, and Limestone Solution on Cooleman Plain, N.S.W., 1972, Jennings, J. N.

After brief descriptions of the geomorphology of the Cooleman Plain karst and in particular of the Blue Waterholes, the methods adopted to analyse the functioning of these major risings are detailed. The discharge regime of Cave Creek below them is oceanic pluvial in type perturbed by drought and snow. There is much annual variation both in seasonal incidence and total amount, with catchment efficiency correspondingly variable. Suspended sediment concentration is even more erratic and monthly determinations are inadequate for calculating corrasional denudation rates. Mean concentrations of suspended solids are about 1/18th of solute load. Total dissolved salts have a strong inverse relationship with discharge, and mean values are high compared with those for other catchments in eastern Australia but none of these determinations are from limestone catchments. Sodium, potassium, and chlorine contents are low compared with the same catchments but silica is relatively high. The ratio of alkaline earths to alkalis indicate that Cave Creek carries carbonate waters and there is an inverse regression of the ratio on discharge. There is inverse correlation of total hardness on discharge likewise due to concentration of surface waters by evaporation in dry periods, together with reduced underground solution rate at times of large, rapid flow. The spring waters remain aggressive. Close regressions of hardness on specific conductivity now permit the latter to be determined in the place of the former. Much evidence converges to indicate that all the springs at the Blue Waterholes are fed from the same conduit. The intermittent flow which comes down the North Branch on the surface to the Blue Waterholes differs significantly in many characters from the spring waters. Rates of Ca + M carbonate equivalent removal vary directly with discharge since hardness varies much less than does water volume. These gross rates have to be adjusted for (a) atmospheric salts entering the karst directly, (b) peripheral solute inputs from the non-karst two-thirds of the catchment and (c) subjacent karst solution before they can be taken as a measure of exposed karst denudation. The methods for achieving this are set out. The total corrections amount to about one third of the total hardness, though the correction for subjacent karst on its own lies within the experimental error of the investigation. The residual rate of limestone removal from the exposed karst also shows a winter/spring high rate and a summer/autumn low rate but the seasonal incidence and annual total varied very much from year to year. In comparison with results from karsts in broadly similar climate, the seasonal rhythm conforms and so does the high proportion (78%) of the solution taking place at or close to the surface. This reduces the importance of the impounded condition of this small karst but supports the use of karst denudation rate as a measure of surface lowering. Cave passage solution may however be more important in impounded karst than its absolute contribution might suggest, by promoting rapid development of underground circulation. The mean value of limestone removal is low for the climatic type and this is probably due to high evapotranspirational loss as well as to the process of eliminating atmospheric, peripheral non-karst and subjacent karst contributions. The difficulties of applying modern solution removal rate to the historical geomorphology of this karst are made evident; at the same time even crude extrapolations are shown to isolate problems valuably.


Nitrobacter in Mammoth Cave., 1977, Fliermans C. B. , Schmidt E. L.
Mammoth Cave, a large lirnestone cavern in Mammoth Cave National Park in the Central Kentucky karst, was first mined for saltpetre in 1808 and was a major source of nitrates used in the manufacture of gunpowder during the War of 1812. The mechanism of saltpetre formation is unknown, although hypotheses encompassing both biotic and abiotic functions have been suggested. Present studies were conducted in various saltpetre caves using species specific fluorescent antibodies in order to determine if the chemoautotroph, Nitrobacter, were present. Population densities and species distribution of Nitrobacter were studied in relation to chemical and physical parameters for over 200 sediment samples from Mammoth Cave. Both the isolation and immunofluorescence data indicate that Nitrobacter are present in relatively high population densities in Mammoth Cave sediments, and that such bacteria are common among saltpetre caves in the southeastern United States. Immunofluorescence data further indicates that N. agilis dominates the Nitrobacter population in Mammoth Cave. The possibility that Nitrobacter is the etiological agent for saltpetre formation is suggested.

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.

The development of limestone cave systems in the dimensions of length and depth., 1978, Ewers R. O. , Ford Derek Clifford
Karst caves are defined as solutional cavities 5-16 mm in diameter and discussion is limited to cases where such continuously extend to a surficial input or output or both. Three opposed sets of general genetic hypotheses ("the classical hypotheses") have been presented for such caves, Arguing that the majority develop 1) in the vadose zone 2) in the phreatic zone 3) proximate and parallel to a watertable. It is contended here that vadose, phreatc and watertable caves are all of common occurrence and may be linked in one genetic theory. A four state model is proposed in which ideal phreatic and watertable caverns are end members: in a given massif of soluble rock the state (cave type) that develops is a function of the frequency of fissures penetrable by groundwater. The water-table type is the high frequency end member. Fissure frequency increases with passage of time after onset of karstification and gradational features may also develop to modify phreatic types. Vadose caves may be of "drawdown" type (following an initial phreatic path) or "invasion" type (developing a new path through rock drained by earlier caves). Extensive cave systems may comprise vadose, phreatic and/or watertable developed contemporaneously.

Microflora and activity of functional groups in the sediments of three caves of Central Italy., 1978, Fumanti B. , Pasqualini A. , Vison L.
A comparative study is presented of the microflora of sediments in three caves with different trophic characteristics. Quantitative and qualitative variations of microflora were investigated for one year by studying the total microflora and the activity of the nitrogen cycle functional groups. Data were compared with those of other works of previous authors. Results show that the quantity and kind of organic matter of sediment are most important factors regulating the abundance and activity of cavernicolous microflora. The experimental part of this paper is prefaced by a digest of investigations previously carried out on cavernicolous microflora and by a report of topographic, geomorphologic, hydrologic and trophic characteristics of the caves examined.

The sensoral outfit of subterranean Trechinae. II. Ultrastructure of the Elytral trichobothria., 1978, Juberthie Christian, Piquemal Francoise
The ultrastructure of trichobothria (Tm2, Tr2, Tr4) of the elytra has been studied in the troglobitic Coleoptera Geotrechus vulcanus and Aphaenops cerberus. Two bipolar neurons innervate these trichobothria. The first ends at the level of the hair base, and its distal segment contains a tubular body, characteristic of mechanoreceptive bristles. The other does not possess a tubular body, and its distal segment ends in the bristle canal; its function is unknown. The trichobothria possess one glial enveloping cell, one trichogen cell, and one tormogen cell; the latter two show an apical, common, large, receptor lymph cavity. The small trichobothria are innervated by a large mechanoreceptor neuron, and by 4 smaller neurons; its function is unknown. The trichobothria of blind Trechinae are highly specialized. A cuticular cup enshrines the hair base; hair and cup move together. The large amplitude swaying movements of the hair are controlled by a spongious tissue around the cup. The trichobothri of Trechinae and Periplaneta have the same type of cuticular dome-shaped structure, and differ from trichobothria that arise from a cavity in the cuticle.

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