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3. Study areas

The project is focused on two main study areas, the Šumava and Ore Mountains. These represent montane areas in which significant landscape disturbance has occurred both in terms of forest cover and stream modification. 

The research is conducted at two spatial scales:

1. Experimental catchments 

In the central Šumava Mountains, experimental catchments are located in the headwaters of the Otava River and its major tributaries (the Blanice, Volyňka, and Vydra Rivers). This area has been subjected to forest and landscape disturbance caused by the bark beetle, windstorms, and widespread felling practises. The individual catchments are comparable in terms of size and basic physiographic parameters, but are different in terms of patterns of forest vegetation, management practises, and the intensity and nature of the disturbance. The planned experimental catchments include, in particular, a basin system that incorporates the streams of Modravský and Roklanský, and the headwaters of Blanice River.

In the Ore Mountains, the headwaters of the Chomutovka River will be used to examine the effects of forest disturbance and stream modification on fluvial dynamics. The catchments in this region reflect the forest and landscape disturbance initiated by industrial air pollution during the 1980s as well as massive river network modification. These catchments also have an established climate and discharge monitoring network.

2. Complex basins of selected streams

At this level, analyses will be carried out in the Blanice, Volyňka and Chomutovka Basins. These basins drain the aforementioned experimental catchments.