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Frontiers of Earth Science

Front. Earth Sci.    2017, Vol. 11 Issue (2) : 385-396
Geomorphic change in Dingzi Bay, East China since the 1950s: impacts of human activity and fluvial input
Qing TIAN1(), Qing WANG2, Yalong LIU3
1. Oceanic Modeling and Observation Laboratory, School of Marine Science, Nanjing University of Information Science and Technology, Nanjing 210044, China
2. Coast Institute, Ludong University, Yantai 264025, China
3. Yantai Marine Environmental Monitoring Center Station, State Oceanic Administration, Yantai 264000, China
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This study examines the geomorphic evolution of Dingzi Bay, East China in response to human activity and variations in fluvial input since the 1950s. The analysis is based on data from multiple mathematical methods, along with information obtained from Remote Sensing, Geographic Information System and Global Position System technology. The results show that the annual runoff and sediment load discharged into Dingzi Bay display significant decreasing trends overall, and marked downward steps were observed in 1966 and 1980. Around 60%–80% of the decline is attributed to decreasing precipitation in the Wulong River Basin. The landform types in Dingzi Bay have changed significantly since the 1950s, especially over the period between 1981 and 1995. Large areas of tidal flats, swamp, salt fields, and paddy fields have been reclaimed, and aquaculture ponds have been constructed. Consequently, the patterns of erosion and deposition in the bay have changed substantially. Despite a reduction in sediment input of 65.68% after 1966, low rates of sediment deposition continued in the bay. However, deposition rates changed significantly after 1981 owing to large-scale development in the bay, with a net depositional area approximately 10 times larger than that during 1961–1981. This geomorphic evolution stabilized following the termination of large-scale human activity in the bay after 1995. Overall, Dingzi Bay has shown a tendency towards silting-up during 1952–2010, with the bay head migrating seaward, the number of channels in the tidal creek system decreasing, and the tidal inlet becoming narrower and shorter. In conclusion, large-scale development and human activity in Dingzi Bay have controlled the geomorphic evolution of the bay since the 1950s.

Keywords sediment load      runoff      human activity      geomorphic evolution      Dingzi Bay     
Corresponding Authors: Qing TIAN   
Just Accepted Date: 19 October 2016   Online First Date: 14 November 2016    Issue Date: 19 May 2017
 Cite this article:   
Qing TIAN,Qing WANG,Yalong LIU. Geomorphic change in Dingzi Bay, East China since the 1950s: impacts of human activity and fluvial input[J]. Front. Earth Sci., 2017, 11(2): 385-396.
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Yalong LIU
Fig.1  Sketch map of Dingzi Bay.
Fig.2  Landform data source of Dingzi Bay in 1961.
Tab.1  List of remote sensing images used in the present study
Tab.2  Mann-Kendall test results of the hydrological time-series in the Wulong River Basin
Tab.3  Transition points in the hydrological time-series for the Wulong River Basin
Fig.3  Accumulated anomaly curves of annual precipitation, annual runoff and annual sediment load of the Wulong River.
Fig.4  Time series of annual precipitation, annual runoff, and annual sediment load of the Wulong River.
Fig.5  Plots of cumulative annual runoff against precipitation (a) and plots of cumulative annual sediment load against runoff of the Wulong River (b).
Tab.4  Relative contributions of precipitation change (CP) and human impacts (CH) to the reduction in runoff and sediment load
Tab.5  Estimated annual runoff and sediment load during different time periods
Fig.6  Distribution of landforms in Dingzi Bay in 1961, 1981, 1995, and 2010.
Tab.6  Areas of the main landform types in Dingzi Bay
Tab.7  Transition matrix of landform types in Dingzi Bay during 1961–2010
Fig.7  Landform Changes in Dingzi Bay.
Fig.8  Spatial distribution of areas of accretion and erosion in Dingzi Bay.
Tab.8  Changes in areas of accretion and erosion in Dingzi Bay during 1961–2010
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