TRaCK: Tropical Rivers and Coastal Knowledge

Science and knowledge that governments, communities, industries for sustainable use of Australia's tropical rivers and estuaries

Alluvial gully erosion: A dominant erosion process across tropical northern Australia (report)

TitleAlluvial gully erosion: A dominant erosion process across tropical northern Australia (report)
Publication TypeReport
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsShellberg, JG, Brooks, AP
Date Published11/2012
InstitutionGriffith University
CityBrisbane
ISBN Number978‐1‐921576‐79‐9
Keywordsalluvial, erosion, gully
Abstract

Gully erosion is the process by which running water cuts new unstable channels into erodible soil and weathered rock. It causes severe land degradation, and is a major source of sediment and associated nutrients to river systems and ultimately to coastal waters or inland basins. In northern Australia there is widespread gully erosion into unconfined alluvial deposits on active floodplains and terraces (relict floodplains) – here defined as alluvial gully erosion. Alluvial gully erosion scarps are locally known as “breakaways” by pastoralists.

Until this recent TRaCK research, alluvial gully erosion in northern Australia was poorly documented scientifically and is substantially different from colluvial or hillslope gullying in south‐eastern or northern Australia.