Assessment of the Impact of Variations in Riparian Landuse on Stream Channel Morphology and Flow Regime in the Kilange River Catchment, Adamawa State, Nigeria

Authors : Dzarma Mohammed Sayd; Ezekiel Yonnana

Volume/Issue : Volume 6 - 2021, Issue 7 - July

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Stream channels and flow regimes in the River Kilange catchment reflect a pattern of both natural and anthropogenic disturbances in the riparian corridors. This study examined the channel morphology and stream flow characteristics in three landuse (Urban, Agriculture and Abandoned Agriculture) settings in the River Kilange catchment. Stream channel geometric properties were measured and the derived values used to evaluate the channel parameters were determined through ancillary data and field observation. Channel morphology adjustments and variations in stream flow characteristics were related to the different landuses at riparian level. Metrics for channel morphology and flow characteristics were quantified in 18 sampling units. Pearsons’ correlation analysis was applied to determine association between landuse and channel morphology. Students’ T-test was used to compare estimated bankfull discharge in the abandoned agriculture landuse category and that of the urban landuse setting. Results revealed both channel widening, increase in wetted-perimeter and bankfull discharge in urban channels. The means of discharge for abandoned-agriculture and urban landuse categories were not equal, signifying increased discharge with increase in human activities. Bivariate linear regression relationship between channel depth and discharge was significant (r =.701, p = 0.035). The result further explained that 42% of the variation of discharge emanated from changes in channel depth. Regressing Cross-sectional area with bankfull discharge also yielded significant relationship (r = .835, p = 0.005), where the regression model explained 65% of the variation. The findings reveal that the identified landuse practices influence stream channel and flow adjustments. Changes in the channel morphology accelerate the river flow process culminating into lateral erosion, flooding and reduction in groundwater recharge. These environmental challenges, if left unchecked could result to land and water resources problems in the area. Therefore, the establishment of forest buffer zone along riparian corridors in the River Kilange catchment is recommended

Keywords : Channel Morphology, Stream Flow, Channel Lateral Erosion, Riparian landuse, River Kilange


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