Journal of Paleolimnology

, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 37–49 | Cite as

Coring tips

  • H. E. WrightJr.
Article

Abstract

This commentary is intended as a practical guide for the non-motorized use of piston corers to obtain undisturbed sections of lake sediments. Good recovery is essential for accurate reconstruction of environmental and limnological history. Emphasis is placed on the square-rod piston corer, which is widely used for acquisition of sediment cores in meter-long sections from lakes as much as 30 m deep. Coring platforms for open water can be easily prepared on pairs of boats or canoes or (in water depth up to 15 m) even a single small rubber raft, but firm anchoring is essenial to maintain the vertical position of the casing and to assure re-entry into a single hole. Incomplete recovery on individual drives is not a result of sediment compaction but rather the build-up of friction on the tube interior, by which the core forms a plug that prevents further recovery.

Short cores of soft sediment for the study of recent changes in lakes are also best acquired with a piston corer, for a gravity corer without a piston may be subject to the same type of plug formation. In cases in which the structure of the sediment must be preserved (e.g. annual laminations), freezing the sediment in place with a dry-ice solution is the best procedure.

Key words

piston cores lake sediments freeze corer rubber raft 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Aaby, B. & B. Berglund, 1986. Sampling techniques for lakes and bogs. In B. Berglund, Editor, Handbook of Palaeoecology and Palaeohydrology, p. 181–194. New York, Wiley, 869 p.Google Scholar
  2. Blomqvist, S., 1985. Reliability of core sampling of soft bottom sediment — an in situ study. Sedimentology 32: 605–612.Google Scholar
  3. Blomqvist, S. & K. Bostrom, 1987. Improved sampling of soft bottom sediments by combined box and piston coring. Sedimentology 34: 715–719.Google Scholar
  4. Digerfeldt, G., 1978. A simple corer for sediment sampling in deep water. University of Lund, Department of Quaternary Geology Report 14: 1–10.Google Scholar
  5. Huttunen, P. & J. Meriläinen, 1975. Modification of a rodless core sampler for investigating lake sediments. Publications of the University of Joensuu BII4.Google Scholar
  6. Jacobson, G. L. Jr. & R. H. W. Bradshaw, 1981. The selection of sites for paleovegetational studies. Quat. Res. 16: 80–96.Google Scholar
  7. Livingstone, D. A., 1955. A lightweight piston sampler for lake deposits. Ecology 36: 139–141.Google Scholar
  8. Renberg, I., 1981. Improved methods for sampling, photographing and varve-counting of varved lake sediments. Boreas 10: 255–258.Google Scholar
  9. Wright, H. E. Jr., 1967. A square-rod piston sampler for lake sediments. J Sedim. Petrol. 37: 975–976.Google Scholar
  10. Wright, H. E. Jr., 1980. Coring of soft lake sediments. Boreas 9: 107–114.Google Scholar
  11. Wright, H. E. Jr., D. A. Livingstone & E. J. Cushing, 1965. Coring devices for lake sediments, In B. Kummel and D. M. Raup, Editors, Handbook of Paleontological Techniques, p. 494–520. San Francisco, W. H. Freeman Co., 852 p.Google Scholar
  12. Wright, H. E. Jr., D. H. Mann, & P. H. Glaser, 1983. Piston corers for lake and wetland sediments. Ecology 65: 657–659.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. E. WrightJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.Limnological Research CenterUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA

Personalised recommendations