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# River Study - Investigating A Drainage Basin - Barbon Beck, YorkshireDales.

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Introduction

River Study - Investigating A Drainage Basin - Barbon Beck, Yorkshire Dales Introduction We went to Barbon Beck in the Yorkshire Dales to investigate an upland catchment. We also went to understand what happens to a rivers discharge and water quality downstream. My skill objectives were measuring discharge and sampling water quality in doing this. I have now developed these techniques. Our hypotheses are that 'there will be an increase in discharge downstream' and in this happening will 'there be a decrease in water quality.' What is a drainage basin? A drainage basin is the land area where precipitation runs off into streams, rivers, lakes, and reservoirs. It contains a river and its tributaries and is an area form which the river collects its water. This is sometimes known as a catchment area. Precipitation which falls on the drainage basin will reach one of the main rivers and follow into the sea. Diagram of a typical drainage basin Describe the drainage basin characteristics. Some of the drainage basin characteristics are that the relief land was very hilly with large hills in place instead of small mountains. ...read more.

Middle

How do you measure discharge? Discharge is measured in cumecs. The equation is:- Discharge (D) = Cross Sectional Area (Cs) x Velocity (V) This can be put in a multiplication table to find out the other values if you don't have either Cs or V. Give reasons for the predicted hypothesis. Based on the secondary reading, what theory underpins your hypothesis. ? Hypothesis 2 What is water quality? Water quality is how clean the water is and what is actually in the water. This could mean the dissolved load which can affect the water in a number of ways. How do you measure water quality? We measure water quality through the biotic and abiotic indicators. This is done to find how clean the water actually is. When we have rainfall we are assuming that all the water coming into the catchment is relatively clean. This is because it is part of the hydrological cycle. 3% of the worlds water is freshwater but only 1% is useable because the other 2% is locked in ice. Water can be coming dirty and unusable whilst moving in the drainage basin by becoming contaminated. ...read more.

Conclusion

Biotic tests are on a long-term basis so you can see the view of it over a long period of time by taking this test. Abiotic are the conductivity tests, nitrate test kits, phosphate test kits and the total dissolved load. The abiotic indicators are actually looking inside the water to see what is dissolved in it as you cannot see it. These show what the water is like. If the water is found to have high nitrate content it is most likely caused by something like slurry or fertilizer which has been put on nearby fields. If it found to have high phosphate content then it is most likely have sewage in it. This is only a 'snapshot' test though because it is only on that day what the water is like. Results A Table to show the readings which can tell us about the abiotic indicators that we found whilst we were in the Yorkshire Dales at six different sites. Type Site 1 Site 2 Site 3 Site 4 Site 5 Site 6 Conductivity 16 23 0 45 48 54 Phosphates 4 5 0 14 12 10 Nitrates 0 0 0 5 5 5 Matthew Oates - 1 - ...read more.

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