Spatially distributed morphological characteristics of macropores in forest soils of Hitachi Ohta Experimental Watershed, Japan
- Cite this article as:
- Noguchi, S., Tsuboyama, Y., Sidle, R.C. et al. J. For. Res. (1997) 2: 207. doi:10.1007/BF02348317
Morphological characteristics of macropores in forest soil profiles were investigated at Hitachi Ohta Experimental Watershed in Japan. Nine individual profiles at different locations (various spatial scales in a catchment) and twenty profiles at one site (a small spatial scale) were excavated to the bedrock to investigate density, origin, diameter, direction, and gradient of macropores. Macropore densities in a soil profile ranged from 3.5 to 29.1 per m and from 5.4 to 75.1 per m2, respectively. Subsurface erosion, root channels, and interactions between subsurface erosion and root channels accounted for 36.9, 36.5, and 19.0%, of the described macropores. The mean macropore diameter in organic-rich soil layer (17–20 mm) was larger than in the B horizon (11–14 mm) at both spatial scales. The dominant gradients of all macropores in the organic-rich soil layer and B horizon were at negative oblique angles. Approximately 90% of the macropores in the organic-rich soil layer and approximately 80% of the macropores in the B horizon fell within the range between −50 and 50 degree planar direction. Subsurface flow and root systems are believed to play important roles in determining the morphological characteristics of macropores. These characteristics appear to have variable influences in different soil horizons rather than at different spatial scales.