Dendritic network models: Improving isoscapes and quantifying influence of landscape and in-stream processes on strontium isotopes in rivers

Geophysical Research Letters
By: , and 

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Abstract

A critical challenge for the Earth sciences is to trace the transport and flux of matter within and among aquatic, terrestrial, and atmospheric systems. Robust descriptions of isotopic patterns across space and time, called “isoscapes,” form the basis of a rapidly growing and wide-ranging body of research aimed at quantifying connectivity within and among Earth's systems. However, isoscapes of rivers have been limited by conventional Euclidean approaches in geostatistics and the lack of a quantitative framework to apportion the influence of processes driven by landscape features versus in-stream phenomena. Here we demonstrate how dendritic network models substantially improve the accuracy of isoscapes of strontium isotopes and partition the influence of hydrologic transport versus local geologic features on strontium isotope ratios in a large Alaska river. This work illustrates the analytical power of dendritic network models for the field of isotope biogeochemistry, particularly for provenance studies of modern and ancient animals.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Dendritic network models: Improving isoscapes and quantifying influence of landscape and in-stream processes on strontium isotopes in rivers
Series title Geophysical Research Letters
DOI 10.1002/2016GL068904
Volume 43
Issue 10
Year Published 2016
Language English
Publisher AGU Publications
Contributing office(s) Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center
Description 9 p.
First page 5043
Last page 5051
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N