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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 clay plug is fine flood deposits in a cut off river meander [16].?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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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 show caves (Keyword) returned 38 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 31 to 38 of 38
The visitors influence on air temperature of Yaltinskaya and Geofizicheskaya show caves (Ay-Petri massif, Mount Crimea), 2011, Amelichev, G. N. , Tokarev, S. V. , Klimchouk, A. B.

Monitoring of air temperature in the Yaltinskaya and Geofizicheskaya caves, situated in the Ay-Petri massif in the Mountainous Crimea, was conducted during 7 months. The purpose of this study is to determine the visitors’ influence on natural environment of the caves. Average temperature during the period of monitoring in Yaltinskaya cave was 7,55 °  (v=0,01) and in Geophisicheskaya cave was 6,99 °(v=0,06).

The visitation by tourists causes rising of air temperature up to 0,39 ˚per day. In periods of low visitation the anthropogenic thermal anomalies broke down naturally during the night time, with the participation of processes of evaporation and condensation of cave moisture. In periods of high attendance a partial retention and accumulation of anthropogenic heat occurs. Daily thermal anomalies in starting and finishing periods of holiday season were at the average 0,04 ˚(Yaltinskaya) and 0,13 ˚(Geofizicheskaya). In the peak season they were 0,07 and 0,20 °, respectively.

The anthropogenic influence on the temperature of the studied caves has a seasonal character. It is unstable and is 1-2 orders of magnitude less than the seasonal variability of the natural temperature background.


Show Caves, 2012, Cigna, Arrigo A.

Show caves are caves that have been developed for visitation by the general public, usually with payment of a fee. Show cave development requires the construction of stairs and trails and the installation of lighting. Properly done, show caves can also serve a conservation role. Care must be taken to avoid excessive heat load on the cave due to both lighting and visitors. Lighting should be constructed to avoid moss, algal, and other plant growth (lampenflora). Trails, stairs, and handrails should be constructed from materials that are compatible with the cave environment. Managers and guides must be trained to recognize their roles in both education of the public and preservation of the cave.


Bacterial community survey of sediments at Naracoorte Caves, Australia, 2012, Adetutu E. M. , Thorpe K. , Shahsavari E. , Bourne S. , Cao X. , Fard R. M. N, Kirby G. , Ball A. S.

Bacterial diversity in sediments at UNESCO World Heritage listed Naracoorte Caves was surveyed as part of an investigation carried out in a larger study on assessing microbial communities in caves. Cave selection was based on tourist accessibility; Stick Tomato and Alexandra Cave (> 15000 annual visits) and Strawhaven Cave was used as control (no tourist access). Microbial analysis showed that Bacillus was the most commonly detected microbial genus by culture dependent and independent survey of tourist accessible and inaccessible areas of show (tourist accessible) and control caves. Other detected sediment bacterial groups were assigned to the Firmicutes, Actinobacteria and Proteobacteria. The survey also showed differences in bacterial diversity in caves with human access compared to the control cave with the control cave having unique microbial sequences (Acinetobacter, Agromyces, Micrococcus and Streptomyces). The show caves had higher bacterial counts, different 16S rDNA based DGGE cluster patterns and principal component groupings compared to Strawhaven. Different factors such as human access, cave use and configurations could have been responsible for the differences observed in the bacterial community cluster patterns (tourist accessible and inaccessible areas) of these caves. Cave sediments can therefore act as reservoirs of microorganisms. This might have some implications on cave conservation activities especially if these sediments harbor rock art degrading microorganisms in caves with rock art.


Monitoring of microbial indicator groups in caves through the use of RIDACOUNT kits, 2012, Mulec J. , Kristů, Fek V. , Chroň, Akova A.

RIDA®COUNT kitsMeasurements of microbiological parameters are not currently widely used for protection, monitoring and preservation of caves although they indicate very well the recent human impact. Here we present a commercially available microbiological kit for cave ecologists, the RIDA®COUNT test kit (R-Biopharm AG, Germany), as a supplementary tool for research and show examples. Simultaneously, lists of microbial indicator groups and cave microhabitats, where this methodology may be applied, are presented. Indicators include certain clinically important human-associated microbes such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus that are easy to quantify with basic cultivation methodology. Relatively higher bacterial counts compared to yeast and moulds on RIDA®COUNT test plates indicate recent and pronounced human impact. Swab samples allow detection of gradients of surface microbial colonization and determination of the microbial load on footprints and fingerprints in caves. In our tests, RIDA®COUNT plates for enumeration of yeast and moulds revealed a similar microbial load between unwashed caving boots and human fingerprints on a metal fence. Similarly, total bacterial counts were comparable between these two surfaces, 5,890 CFU/100 cm2 for unwashed boots and 4,340 CFU/100 cm2 for fingerprints on metal fence. Bacterial counts on walking surfaces in show caves can exceed 10,000 CFU/100 cm2 (Postojna Cave). These examples show that quantification of microbial indicator groups revealed increased microbial load and possible biohazard in the underground. This procedure may be widely adopted as a part of a regular monitoring programme in caves.


Monitoring of microbial indicator groups in caves through the use of RIDACOUNT kits, 2012, Mulec Janez Kritů, Fek Vclav, Chroň, kov Alica

 

RIDA®COUNT kitsMeasurements of microbiological parameters are not currently widely used for protection, monitoring and preservation of caves although they indicate very well the recent human impact. Here we present a commercially available microbiological kit for cave ecologists, the RIDA®COUNT test kit (R-Biopharm AG, Germany), as a supplementary tool for research and show examples. Simultaneously, lists of microbial indicator groups and cave microhabitats, where this methodology may be applied, are presented. Indicators include certain clinically important human-associated microbes such as Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp. and Staphylococcus aureus that are easy to quantify with basic cultivation methodology. Relatively higher bacterial counts compared to yeast and moulds on RIDA®COUNT test plates indicate recent and pronounced human impact. Swab samples allow detection of gradients of surface microbial colonization and determination of the microbial load on footprints and fingerprints in caves. In our tests, RIDA®COUNT plates for enumeration of yeast and moulds revealed a similar microbial load between unwashed caving boots and human fingerprints on a metal fence. Similarly, total bacterial counts were comparable between these two surfaces, 5,890 CFU/100 cm2 for unwashed boots and 4,340 CFU/100 cm2 for fingerprints on metal fence. Bacterial counts on walking surfaces in show caves can exceed 10,000 CFU/100 cm2 (Postojna Cave). These examples show that quantification of microbial indicator groups revealed increased microbial load and possible biohazard in the underground. This procedure may be widely adopted as a part of a regular monitoring programme in caves.
 

Mycological study for a management plan of a neotropical show cave (Brazil)., 2013, Taylor E. L. S, Resendestoianoff M. A. A, Lopes Ferreira R.

Caves are stable environments with characteristics favoring the development of microorganisms. The allocthonous input of organic matter and microbes into the warm Neotropical caves may favor the development of filamentous fungi, including pathogenic species. Histoplasma capsulatum is a pathogenic species commonly found in caves and associated with bat and bird guano. Many Brazilian caves have been historically visited due to scenic and religious tourism. The objective of this study was to perform a microbiology study for a management plan of a show cave in Brazil, focusing on the presence and distribution of pathogenic and opportunistic fungi in the cave. Statistic analysis was used to verify the influence of touristic activity on airborne fungi spore load. Fungi were isolated from air and guano in Lapa Nova Cave. Samples were obtained through serial dilution, direct and settle plate techniques. For H. capsulatum, samples were incubated in specific media and conditions. Airborne fungal spore load was compared prior and during visitation and statistically analyzed. A total of 2,575 isolates from the genera Aspergillus, Calcarisporium, Chaetomium, Cladosporium, Curvularia, Emericella, Eurotium, Fusarium, Geotrichum, Gliocladium, Mucor, Purpureocillium, Paecilomyces, Penicillium, Rhizopus and Trichoderma were identified. Histoplasma capsulatum was not isolated from the cave. Eleven opportunistic species were identified. Significant (p<0.05) variations on fungal richness in the air occurred due to cave visitation. Areas of potential microbiologic risks were indicated and management actions suggested. The results suggest a diverse community inhabiting the cave. Possible opportunistic species should be monitored in show caves and microbiota should always be included in the elaboration of cave management plans. This is the first detailed microbiologic study for a management plan of a show cave in the country. It provides relevant information for future management plans.


Diatom flora in subterranean ecosystems: a review., 2014,

In scarcity of light and primary producers, subterranean ecosystems are generally extremely oligotrophic habitats, receiving poor supplies of degradable organic matter from the surface. Human direct impacts on cave ecosystems mainly derive from intensive tourism and recreational caving, causing important alterations to the whole subterranean environment. In particular, artificial lighting systems in show caves support the growth of autotrophic organisms (the so-called lampenflora), mainly composed of cyanobacteria, diatoms, chlorophytes, mosses and ferns producing exocellular polymeric substances (EPSs) made of polysaccharides, proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. This anionic EPSs matrix mediates to the intercellular communications and participates to the chemical exchanges with the substratum, inducing the adsorption of cations and dissolved organic molecules from the cave formations (speleothems). Coupled with the metabolic activities of heterotrophic microorganisms colonising such layer (biofilm), this phenomenon may lead to the corrosion of the mineral surfaces. In this review, we investigate the formation of biofilms, especially of diatom-dominated ones, as a consequence of artificial lighting and its impacts on speleothems. Whenever light reaches the subterranean habitat (both artificially and naturally) a relative high number of species of diatoms may indeed colonise it. Cave entrances, artificially illuminated walls and speleothems inside the cave are generally the preferred substrates. This review focuses on the diatom flora colonising subterranean habitats, summarizing the information contained in all the scientific papers published from 1900 up to date. In this review we provide a complete checklist of the diatom taxa recorded in subterranean habitats, including a total of 363 taxa, belonging to 82 genera. The most frequent and abundant species recorded in caves and other low light subterranean habitats are generally aerophilic and cosmopolitan. These are, in order of frequency: Hantzschia amphioxys, Diadesmis contenta, Orthoseira roeseana, Luticola nivalis, Pinnularia borealis, Diadesmis biceps and Luticola mutica. Due to the peculiarity of the subterranean habitats, the record of rare or new species is relatively common. The most important environmental factors driving species composition and morphological modifications observed in subterranean populations are analysed throughout the text and tables. In addition, suggestions to prevent and remove the corrosive biofilms in view of an environmentally sustainable cave management are discussed.


The show cave of Diros vs. wild caves of Peloponnese, Greece - distribution patterns of Cyanobacteria, 2014,

The karst cave ‘Vlychada’of Diros, one of the oldest show caves in Peloponnese, sustains extended phototrophic biofilms on various substrata – on rocks inside the cave including speleothems, and especially near the artificial lighting installation (‘Lampenflora’). After a survey of the main abiotic parameters (Photosynthetically Active Radiation -PAR, Temperature -T, Relative Humidity -RH, Carbon Dioxide -CO2) three clusters of sampling sites were revealed according to Principal Component Analysis (PCA): i) the water gallery section predominately influenced by CO2, ii) the dry passages influenced by RH and PAR, and iii) the area by the cave exit at the dry section influenced by temperature. The collected samples from the water gallery section and the dry passages of the cave revealed a total of 43 taxa of Cyanobacteria, with the unicellular/colonial forms being the most abundant. The applied non-metric Multi-dimensional Scaling Ordination (nMDS) of the cumulative species composition showed a clear distinction between the water gallery section and the dry passages of the cave. Further comparison with previous data from other wild caves of Peloponnese (‘Kastria’, ‘Francthi’, and ‘Selinitsa’) was conducted revealing a distinction between the show cave and the wild ones. Apart from the human impact on cave ecosystems – through aesthetic alteration (‘greening’) of cave decorations by the ‘Lampenflora’, and by the cleaning treatments and restoration projects on the speleothems – identification of the organisms constituting the ‘Lampenflora’ might provide taxonomically and ecologically significant taxa.


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