After completion of this course, the student:
- understands the processes and mechanisms governing the interaction between biota and the hydrological cycle at different scales;
- understands how this knowledge can be applied in the practice of restoration ecology and studies of global change;
- has knowledge of how to collect meaningful ecohydrological data in the field.
The discipline of ecohydrology has been defined in many ways. The common denominator in these definitions, however, is that the discipline of ecohydrology studies the interactions between biota (including humans) and the hydrological cycle. The spatial scale of study ranges from the cellular level of plant stomata to the global scale.|
The ecohydrology course focuses on the processes and mechanisms that govern the interaction between biota and the hydrological cycle and that operate over this large variety of scales. The outline of the course can be divided in three parts, following the different scales at which processes are studied.
The major part of the course deals with processes that operate on the local scale. It addresses interactions of individual plants and plant communities with their abiotic environment, including ground- and surface water regimes and biogeochemistry, and how knowledge of these interactions can be integrated and scaled up to study processes at the catchment scale. On a practical level, we will look at how knowledge of these interactions can be applied to conserve or restore water-dependent vegetation and habitats at the local level.
Additionally, the course will address soil-plant-atmosphere interactions on the global scale, focusing on the interactions between ecosystems or biomes and the global hydrological cycle and climate.
This course is the entry requirement for:
- Bachelor's thesis GSS, track WCE (GEO3-2422)