Namibia Digital Repository

LANDFORM DEVELOPMENT ALONG THE MIDDLE COURSE OF THE KUISEB RIVER IN THE NAMIB DESERT, NAMIBIA

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Title

LANDFORM DEVELOPMENT ALONG THE MIDDLE COURSE OF THE KUISEB RIVER IN THE NAMIB DESERT, NAMIBIA

Subject

African study monographs. Supplementary issue (2005), 30:
15-25

Description

The hyperarid to arid Namib Desert extends along the west coast of southern Africa. The Kuiseb River is one of the major ephemeral rivers originating in the interior highland, and crosses the Namib Desert. Fluvial terraces are well developed along the middle reaches of the Kuiseb River near Gobabeb, and are classified into four surfaces: upper (H), middle 1 (M1), middle 2 (M2), and lower (L). Layers of calcrete are founded on the M1 and M2 surfaces, and gypcrete layers are founded on the H surface. Dead tree matter, buried by dune sand on the L surface, dates to 300±60 years BP and 550±50 years BP. The calcareous crusts on the M1 surface date to 5, 300±60 years BP and 6, 450±50 years BP, and those of the M2 surface date to 22, 070±260 years BP. The presence of calcrete suggests that the ground water level was higher when the M1 and M2 surfaces were formed than it is at the present time. Tree size distribution on the L surface demonstrates that the L surface was also formed during a relatively wet period. It may be concluded, therefore, that these fluvial terraces record the humid periods of ca 22 ka, 5–6.5 ka, and 300–600 years BP in the catchment area of the Kuiseb River. The presence of a water-soluble gypsum crust on the H surface suggests that the paleohydrologic environment of these terrace-forming periods probably involved increased rainfall in the interior highland east of the desert.

Creator

Kotaro Yamagata, Kazuharu Mizuno

Publisher

African study monographs. Supplementary issue (2005), 30:
15-25

Date

2005

Contributor

Bernard C. Moore

Format

PDF File

Language

English

Type

Journal Article

Files

Collection

Citation

Kotaro Yamagata, Kazuharu Mizuno , “LANDFORM DEVELOPMENT ALONG THE MIDDLE COURSE OF THE KUISEB RIVER IN THE NAMIB DESERT, NAMIBIA,” Namibia Digital Repository, accessed September 18, 2018, http://namibia.leadr.msu.edu/items/show/267.

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