Environment and ecology of Scirpus maritimus L. var. paludosus (Nels.) Kuk. in saline wetlands of the Canadian Prairies

Thumbnail Image
Lieffers, Victor James.
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Seasonal changes in water volume and water and sediment salinity were monitored at three shallow, closed, saline wetlands in Saskatchewan in 1978 and 1979. Porter Lake, the main study site was dry in 1978 and flooded in 1979. When dry, the salinity of surface sediments was higher than sediments 50-60 cm deep, and those in the lake centre were more saline than at the shoreline. Upon reflooding in 1979, there was a large, immediate decrease in surface sediment salinity and surface layers were less saline than sediments 50-60 cm deep. Over the summer in 1979, the water salinity showed a continuous increase and the mass of dissolved salts within the water volume increased fivefold. The ionic proportions of the major salts within the water remained relatively constant. Differences in the ionic proportions of salts within the sediments at various basin positions and depths, appear to be related to the differences in the solubility of the salts and where they are precipitated as the lake water levels recede. Problems in saline lake classification and management are discussed. The life cycle and seasonal growth of Scirpus maritimus L. var. paludosus (Nels.) Kuk. were monitored, biweekly, at three wetlands in Saskatchewan in 1978 and 1979. Culms sprout from over-wintered tubers in May and lateral rhizomes extend outward and produce tillers and new tubers. Flowering occurs in late June and seed is ripe by August. Shoot senescence begins in early August and by winter all the shoots die...