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Revista Brasileira de Ciência do Solo

On-line version ISSN 1806-9657


CAMPOS, José Ricardo da Rocha; SILVA, Alexandre Christófaro  and  VIDAL-TORRADO, Pablo. Mapping, organic matter mass and water volume of a peatland in Serra do Espinhaço Meridional. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Solo [online]. 2012, vol.36, n.3, pp.723-732. ISSN 1806-9657.

Peatlands form in areas where net primary of organic matter production exceeds losses due to the decomposition, leaching or disturbance. Due to their chemical and physical characteristics, bogs can influence water dynamics because they can store large volumes of water in the rainy season and gradually release this water during the other months of the year. In Diamantina, Minas Gerais, Brazil, a peatland in the environmental protection area of Pau-de-Fruta ensures the water supply of 40,000 inhabitants. The hypothesis of this study is that the peat bogs in Pau-de-Fruta act as an environment for carbon storage and a regulator of water flow in the Córrego das Pedras basin. The objective of this study was to estimate the water volume and organic matter mass in this peatland and to study the influence of this environment on the water flow in the Córrego das Pedras basin. The peatland was mapped using 57 transects, at intervals of 100 m. Along all transects, the depth of the peat bog, the Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates and altitude were recorded every 20 m and used to calculate the area and volume of the peatland. The water volume was estimated, using a method developed in this study, and the mass of organic matter based on samples from 106 profiles. The peatland covered 81.7 hectares (ha), and stored 497,767 m3 of water, representing 83.7 % of the total volume of the peat bog. The total amount of organic matter (OM) was 45,148 t, corresponding to 552 t ha-1 of OM. The peat bog occupies 11.9 % of the area covered by the Córrego das Pedras basin and stores 77.6 % of the annual water surplus, thus controlling the water flow in the basin and consequently regulating the water course.

Keywords : Histosols; water retention; water flow.

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