Section III: Earth & atmospheric sciences.
HALL COUNTY HISTORIC PHOTO DIGITIZATION AND ORTHO-RECTIFICATION PROJECT **, Michael Adams *, Patrick Taylor * and J.B. Sharma Institute for Environmental Spatial Analysis, Gainesville State College, Gainesville, GA 30503. The Hall County NRCS has a collection of vintage air photos of the county which are used for referencing the land cover and changes over the past several decades. Students at Gainesville State College have been involved in a service project funded by Georgia View Consortium to digitize and ortho-rectify these photos. These sets of photos will then be merged as a mosaic to develop a seamless photo-map of the county for different times in the past. This will preserve a valuable legacy and be available to the citizens of the region on the WWW for many possible applications including real estate development planning, hydrology and historical reconstruction.
WATER QUANTITY AND QUALITY OF WEST GEORGIA STREAMS DURING THE 2007 DROUGHT **, Ellie Busse *, J. Brian Stogner * and Curtis L. Hollabaugh, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118, The drought of 2007 has set new record low flows in rivers of west Georgia and east Alabama. During the drought of 2000 a record low mean daily flow of 18 cfs was set at the USGS station on the Little Tallapoosa River near Newell, Alabama. During the drought of 2007 there were 57 days with flow below the record of 2000 and a new record mean daily flow of 5.6 cfs was established. Beginning in July 2007 UWG students began direct measurement of flow in the Little Tallapoosa River, its tributaries, a nd tributaries of the Chattahoochee River in Carroll County. The Little Tallapoosa River is a source of drinking water for the city of Carrollton and is exposed to agricultural runoff and urban sprawl. This new research is part of long-term water monitoring from 2003-2007 at the UWG Center for Water Resources. Students gain experience in measuring field and lab parameters such as turbidity, pH, specific conductivity, dissolved oxygen, ammonia, phosphorus, fecal coliform bacteria, E,coli bacteria, and nitrates. A comparison of turbidity and content of fecal coliform bacteria from six sites was conducted using data from 2003 to present along the Little Tallapoosa River; it showed a direct correlation with an R2 value ranging from 0.6 to 0.8. From the six sites turbidity ranged from 5.7 to 120 NTU with a mean of 12 to 17 NTU. Fecal coliform bacteria ranged from 20 to 25000 col./l00mL with a geometric mean of 180 to 340 col./ l00mL.
MINERALOGY AND CRYSTAL ORIENTATION IN THE TOPAZ BEARING RHYOLITE OF TOPAZ MOUNTAIN, JUAB COUNTY, UTAH. **, Kimberly E. Cook * and Curtis L. Hollabaugh. University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118. Topaz Mountain, located in the Thomas Range of Juab County, Utah, contains extensive lava flows, domes, and tuffs. These structures, caused by explosive eruptions of F-rich rhyolite lava, are approximately 6.5 million years in age, and are characterized throughout the area by complex flow banding. At outcrop scale, the flow banding is one of the most distinct features of Topaz Mountain and appears to have provided pathways for vapor transport, with crystal-lined vugs concentrated along the flow banding. The mineralogy of the flows includes both phenocrysts of feldspar and quartz and extensive vapor phase minerals. In addition to topaz, the most common vapor phase minerals include quartz, garnet, hematite, pseudobrookite, bixbyite, red beryl, and fluorite; many of which are uncommon in silicic volcanic rocks. Over the years, several specimens have been collected for the purpose of research at UWG. From the samples collected at Topaz Mountain, a series of orthogonal thin sections were prepared and photographed under a polarizing microscope at low power. Each picture will be examined to determine mineral content and the order in which crystallization occurred. Next, the relationships between phenocrysts, vapor phase minerals, and flow banding will be analyzed.
WATER SUPPLY NEEDS OF MAJOR GEORGIA CITIES: RATIO OF POPULATION TO WATERSHED AS A PREDICTOR OF METRO ATLANTA DRINKING WATER NEEDS, Curtis L. Hollabaugh, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118. During most of 2007 much of north Georgia was under extreme drought conditions. Unfortunately, the Chattahoochee watershed is also very small when compared to the size of Metro-Atlanta. Of the seven largest cities in Georgia only Atlanta and Athens (Clarke County) have population/watershed ratios over 200. Long-term solutions for water quality and quantity during droughts include: (1) redefinition of Lakes Lanier and Allatoona as drinking water reservoirs, (2) systems of lakes and aqueducts linking Athens and Atlanta to the Tennessee River and the Savannah River at Augusta, (3) mandatory summer outdoor water restrictions for all lawns and new plantings, (4) additional supply by drilling well fields, coupled with sustainable groundwater withdrawals based on geologic mapping and groundwater flow, (5) redefinition of West Point Lake as the principle lake to maintain flow in the lower Chattahoochee River, (6) updating of sewage treatment so that more and cleaner treated sewage is discharged into Georgia steams, and (7) more intensive watershed assessment that protects human drinking water supplies and natural habitat. With intensive geologic mapping, well fields may be a rapid and less expensive solution than reservoirs. Large scale transfer from one basin to another is possible only if a relation between willing buyer and willing seller exists.
BISEQUAL SPODOSOL PROFILE ON TRAIL RIDGE IN SOUTHEASTERN GEORGIA, Donald M. Thieme, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, GA 31698. Trail Ridge is a north-south trending feature defined by the highest terrain in southeastern Georgia and extending into Florida on the Atlantic side of the Okefenokee Swamp. Based upon its position relative to other relict shoreline features of the Atlantic Coastal Plain that contain corals and other fossil material, Trail Ridge formed from beach and dune deposition in the middle Pleistocene. That means that soil formation should have begun there as early as the very warm interglacial period which occurred between 125,000 and 75,000 years ago. Although there are no soil series found exclusively on Trail Ridge, spodosol series such as Mandarin, Mascotte, and Leon tend to predominate. These series, and spodosols in general, are associated with conifer forests such as are found today in these parts of Georgia and Florida. Preliminary results from field description of a very deep, bisequal spodosol (Mandarin series) in southeastern Georgia suggest strong effects from weathering under conifer forest in a climate similar to the present. However, some possible inherited signatures of the last interglacial period have also been detected in samples from "spodic" (Bh) horizons in the profile, through detailed particle size and geochemical analysis, as well as examination under petrographic and scanning electron microscope.
OCCURRENCE OF THE GIANT PLEISTOCENE TORTOISE, HESPEROTESTUDO CRASSISCUTATA, FROM CLARK QUARRY, GLYNN COUNTY, GEORGIA **, Josh L. Clark *, Dennis Parmley, and Alfred J. Mead, Georgia College & State University, Milledgeville, GA 31061. Clark Quarry is a late Pleistocene deposit located in Brunswick, Georgia. Recent carbon dating of Bison latifrons fossils has placed the age of the deposit at approximately 12,500 years BP. The fossils from this deposit are very diverse, including mammalian fossils, Mammuthus columbi and B. latifrons being the most prominent, and many smaller vertebrates such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, and birds. An extensive examination of the herpetofauna of Clark Quarry is underway, and at this point, it is clear that reptiles and amphibians make up a large part of the fossil assemblage. Fossils of frogs, at least one salamander (Amphiuma), alligators, turtles, lizards, and natricine snakes have been identified. Of particular interest is the giant tortoise Hesperotestudo crassiscutata (Leidy 1889). It is represented by carapace and plastron elements, osteoderms, and a scapula. Hesperotestudo serves as a paleoclimatic indicator species. Its presence is significant because it shows that during the late Pleistocene, coastal Georgia was probably warmer year round than the present day, or at least stayed warm enough in the winter for this large non-burrowing tortoise to survive.
AN INTERACTIVE FOSSIL IDENTIFICATION PROGRAM INTRODUCES NOVICE STUDENTS TO PALEONTOLOGY, Lorri Dee Dukes * and Julie K. Bartley, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118. The Fossil Identification Program (FIP) is an interactive web-based computer program designed to assist the entry-level historical geology student learning the techniques necessary to identify fossils. This program presents paleontology in a manner that is understandable and comprehensible. It was created to be the first step in the learning process of becoming acquainted with an unfamiliar subject. Familiarity is required for students to become comfortable enough to be open and receptive to new information. Three fossil separations are the focus of this interactive database, which guides the students through a series of questions that will lead them to a positive identification of an unknown fossil. The program was developed, modified and tested for effectiveness over three semesters. The overall conclusion is that the students who used the program showed improved confidence in fossil identification; however, they scored lower on competency assessments. This research reinforces a fundamental academic principle that proficiency is achieved through practice. Without accountability through implementation, competency will not increase. Results show that FIP is successful in introducing the novice student to the skills necessary for fossil identification.
RELOCATION OF INLETS ON THE GEORGIA COAST. IS BLACKBEARD ISLAND THE SOUTHERN TIP OF ST. CATHERINES SPIT?, Timothy M. Chowns and J. Brian Stogner *, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118. The morphology of the spit at the southern end of St. Catherines Island records episodes of deposition interrupted by erosion spanning more than 3000 years of progradation (based on archaeological data). Deposition of recurved spits leads to sets of concordant beach ridges that are convex towards the sea while erosion and overwash produce long, narrow march hammocks that are concave to the sea and truncate older structures This pattern extends about 3.5 miles north to a distinctive erosional lineament, called Zapala scarp, that marks the former limit of Sapelo Sound. North and west of this lineament, on Cracker Tom Hammock, the pattern of beach ridges is quite different. Depositional contacts are cuspate and concave towards the sea while erosional contacts are linear and sub-parallel to the modern shore. A similar pattern is observed on Blackbeard Island and leads us to conclude that Blackbeard Island formed by the breaching of the older part of St. Catherines spit. IN order to substantiate this. hypothesis it will be necessary to confirm the absolute ages of both the older and younger parts of the spit by luminescence dating.
PRACTICAL APPLICATION FOR A ONE-DIMENSIONAL GEOPHYSICAL RESISTIVITY APPARATUS: FIELD TESTS AND NUMERICAL SIMULATION **, John Allison *, Michael Nadolsky *, and Christian Poppeliers, Augusta State University, Augusta, GA 30904. We report on the construction, testing and limitations of a Wennerarray geophysical resistivity apparatus. The instrument consists of two electrodes that introduce a constant-voltage current into the Earth. Two additional electrodes are then used to measure the voltage at specific points at the Earth's surface, By varying the distance between the four electrodes, the instrument effectively samples different depths of the Earth. Analysis of the data yields information about the subsurface geometry of Earth, based on the differing electrical resistivity of Earth materials which are located at different depths. We found that the device is limited to an effective depth of penetration of about 50m due to a large DC-offset at large array apertures. We have also developed a computational finite-difference scheme to model the Earth's resistivity structure. We use this simulation method to model the subsurface structure of a sloping sedimentary/ bedrock interface. The goal is to model actual field data in the attempt to determine how three dimensional Earth structure will be expressed when measured and analyzed with our (one-dimensional) resistivity methodology.
A LAND-COVER AND LAND CHANGE ANALYSIS OF COLQUITT COUNTY, GEORGIA FOR THE PERIOD 1984 TO 2002 UNTILIZING LANDSAT IMAGERY **, Robert Aultman * and J.B. Sharma, Gainesville State College. Colquitt County has been carrying out long-term planning without detailed knowledge of the relative abundance of land-cover types. There is general anecdotal knowledge of the land-cover change over time, but no quantitative inventory of change. This project has produced land-cover maps for 1984 and 2002 utilizing Landsat multispectral imagery and remote sensing techniques. A quantitative landcover change analysis was performed and the results produced in a map form. This analysis has important implications for zoning, planning, and environmental applications in Colquitt County.
CORMORANT FOSSILS FROM THE PLEISTOCENE-AGED CLARK QUARRY, GLYNN COUNTY, GEORGIA **, Kelly A. Clark *, Robert M. Chandler, Alfred J. Mead, Georgia College & State University, Milledgeville, GA 31061. Clark Quarry is a recently discovered Pleistocene-aged locality within Glynn County, Georgia. All of the fossils discovered thus far at this locality seem to indicate a riverine habitat with more moderate winters than those of today. The most abundant macrofossils are those of the Columbian mammoth, Mammuthus columbi, and the giant bison, Bison latifrons. Radiocarbon ((14)C) dating of Bison latifrons fossils yielded an age of approximately 12,500 BP. Smaller fossils have been recovered such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, and of more significance in the context of this study, birds. To date, a minimum of five avian orders are represented. These include the Anseriformes, Pelecaniformes, Gruiformes, Charadriiformes, and Passeriformes. The Pelecaniformes are of particular interest because a large number of the avian fossils are of the Double-crested Cormorant, Phalacrocorax auritus. Fossils identified thus far as P. auritus include the distal end of a left tibiotarsus, the distal and of a left humerus, a complete tarsometatarsus, the mid-shaft of a right ulna, and tentatively an acetabulum, a cervical vertebra, and a phalanx. Comparisons with the extinct cormorant, P. idahensis, are being investigated to determine if the Clark Quarry of variation for the living species.
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|Publication:||Georgia Journal of Science|
|Date:||Mar 22, 2008|
|Previous Article:||Section II: chemistry.|
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