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Identifying Ice-Jam Flooding Events through the Application of Dendrogeomorphological Methods
  • Teagan Lubiniecki,
  • Colin P. Laroque,
  • Karl-Erich Lindenschmidt
Teagan Lubiniecki
University of Saskatchewan College of Agriculture and Bioresources

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Colin P. Laroque
University of Saskatchewan College of Agriculture and Bioresources
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Karl-Erich Lindenschmidt
University of Saskatchewan Global Institute for Water Security
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In this research, we explore whether a dendrogeomorphological assessment of tree scarring can accurately summarize past ice-jam flooding events occurring at a given reach of a river. A sample site was chosen with a history of ice-jam flooding located in close proximity to a river gauge station. Samples were collected along a 200-metre stretch of riverbank to capture the variation in elevations and possible different ice-jam flooding events. Disk samples were collected from trees with visual scarring evidence that indicated they had endured a past ice-jam event. Tree cores from an adjacent stand were collected to create a master chronology for each of the sampled species. Tree disks and cores were analyzed under a microscope using a Velmex stage system, then visually and statistically crossdated using the program COFECHA. Based on the last year of tree growth, years of individual injury events were established. The years of injury event dates were compared against the years of highest instantaneous maximum water elevations from gauged river data. The two data sets correlated, as years with highest recorded injury event dates were also the years of highest instantaneous water level elevations. The most common years of injury event dates were directly reflected in the top five years of highest river instantaneous water level elevations. In addition, the year of 2020 had the highest water elevations in the past 27 years, which was again reflected in the dendrogeomorphological data as the injury event year of 2020 was recorded on over 90% of the sampled tree disks. The correlation found between the gauged river data and the dendrogeomorphological data strongly suggests that past ice-jam flooding event dates can accurately be determined through the analysis of trees in riverbank stretches that have been impacted by ice-jams. The relationship of the gauged river data to the dendrogeomorphological data will therefore allow researchers to determine ice-jam site histories in remote areas where no gauged data exists. The site histories can provide information such as the years or heights that past ice-jam flooding occurred, which could then be used in ice-jam flooding hazard assessments.
17 May 2023Submitted to River Research and Applications
17 May 2023Submission Checks Completed
17 May 2023Assigned to Editor
18 May 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
19 May 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
21 Jul 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Major
25 Aug 20231st Revision Received
25 Aug 2023Assigned to Editor
25 Aug 2023Submission Checks Completed
25 Aug 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
28 Aug 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
28 Sep 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
10 Oct 20232nd Revision Received
10 Oct 2023Submission Checks Completed
10 Oct 2023Assigned to Editor
10 Oct 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending