Wetland Hydrology

Wetlands are an important landscape element to which various types of plants and animals are vitally linked. In addition to their irreplaceable ecological function, they can also significantly influence hydrological processes in the landscape. However, the term "wetland" covers multiple landscape units (natural and anthropogenic) with different vegetation composition, but mainly with various hydrogeological, soil, and micro-climatic factors. These factors then determine the overall water regime of the wetlands and the degree of their influence on local streams  in terms of runoff dynamics or water quality. Each wetland can thus affect the surrounding landscape, and especially the local streams, in different ways and to a varying extent. It is  thus a question how different wetlands will react to climate change, or whether their degradation is natural or to what extent it is anthropogenically conditioned.

In short:

We deal with the hydrological role of wetlands in the landscape, their influence on water retention, water quality in streams and mitigation of hydrological extremes (drought, floods).

Link to climate change:

A change in the distribution of the amount and form of precipitation in the year will cause a change in the runoff from the wetlands. Wetlands degradation will lead to changes in runoff regime and in water retention in the landscape.

Societal relevance:

We verify which measures of landscape and water management and under which conditions are beneficial for society and support the benefits of the landscape to humans. Investigated benefits of wetlands to humans include cooling of the local climate, water supply in the basin, and water quality.

Research Activities

  • Effect of wetlands on water retention in the catchment
  • The role of wetlands in mitigating hydrological extremes
  • The influence of seasonal variability of precipitation on the hydrological balance of wetlands
  • The use of natural tracers for the assessment of the water regime of springs
  • Impact of wetlands on stream water quality
  • Soil and hydrological degradation of wetlands and its influence on the hydrological regime of a catchment
  • Spatial variability of hydromorphic soils and its influence on runoff formation