Geography fieldwork coursework

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Page 14 of 59 Methodology In this section I shall be describing the different sites at which we collectedour primary data and methods that were used to collect this data. I will also be looking at how the risks were minimized. Risk Assessment Risk How it was minimized There could have been rat faeces in the river which could have caused diseases if it got into the skin.

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Marigold gloves were worn at all times when in contact with the river. We could have slipped on river substrate while taking the different measurements. Wellington boots were worn while in the river in order to give us more grip and this would minimize the risk of slipping.

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Ticks Long sleeve clothing was worn to cover the whole body and therefore decreasing the chances of getting ticks on the body. Getting diseases from the river Hands were washed thoroughly with soap after returning from the river study. Uneven terrain Hiking boots were worn in order to minimize any injuries taking place. Hypothermia Suitable warm clothing such as, woolly hats and gloves were worn when we were outside on the field trip. Falling into the river and breaking bones. We were working in groups of 6 so that if someone fell in the river, then a teacher could be called by the remaining people.

Getting wet in the river. Waterproof clothing was worn when we were in the river. Page 15 of 59 Justificationof Methods There are three types of sampling methods which could have been used on this river study and are a random method, a systematic method and a stratified method. We chose a stratified sampling method for the sites because we had prior knowledge of the area and so knew where the different parts of geology, the confluences and the urban areas were.

If we used a systematic sampling method, then you might overlook key points along the river and go into private land without knowing. A random sampling method was used to measure the clast size at each site so that we were not biased when collectingthe data.

When all the data was collectedand put into graphs, this would tell us the change from the source to the mouth of the different factors that we were measuring.

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If we only sampled at two sites, then we would not find a trend in the data and find it very hard to interpret it. These are the different factors that we sampled and how many we chose to sample at each site: 1 Gradient- We chose to sample one gradient at every site because the reading would always be the same. Page 16 of 59 Width The width was calculated at each of the eight sites along the course of the river Holford. It took the least amount of time to measure so was therefore taken first. We used a measuring tape in meters to measure the width because it is flexible and very easy to use.

In order to measure the width, we had to face upstream and measure from left to right. We put the measuring tape right to the edge of the banks and then read out the reading.

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It only required two people to measure the width and so the other members of the group were writing down the readings in meters. Measuring the width of the river. Depth After the width was measured we found the depth. The depth of the river was calculated using a ridged meter ruler and it was predicted that as we continued downstream, the river would get deeper. While measuring the depth we used the narrow edge of the metre ruler to prevent a build up of water and stood after the metre ruler in order not to affect the results.

Direction of flow Direction of flow Page 17 of 59 Wetted Perimeter The third reading we took was the wetted perimeter. The wetted perimeter was measured using a measuring tape because it is flexible. Firstly, the measuring tape was spread along the width of the river and left slacking.

Then, someone in the group walked in a straight line along the measuring tape and read the measurement out to be recorded. While we were measuring the wetted perimeter we were careful to work upstream and from the left bank to right bank so not to alter our readings. Measuring the wetted perimeter of the River Holford. Velocity The velocity was measured using a hydroprop and an impeller. The impeller was placed onto the hydroprop, and then put two thirds of the depth into the river in order to prevent the impeller from touching the bed.

A stopwatch was started immediately as the impeller was placed into the water and stopped when the impeller stopped. Some readings were defaulted at seconds because at some sites, the water was too shallow for the impeller to go in. Measuring the velocity Direction of flow Direction of flow Page 18 of 59 Angularity and Size of Bed load First, 15 clasts were picked up from the river bed at random, with our eyes closed so that we were not biased in the selection of the clasts.

Then the angularity of the clasts were measured by using the cailleux roundness index chart.

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Next, the longest axis of the clasts were measured using a rigid meter ruler and then recorded. Measuring the longest Axis of the clasts. Measuring the angularity of the clasts. Gradient The last reading that we had to take at each site was the Gradient. First, one group member went into the river and held the E-ruler straight just above the tip of their boot.

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The readings were then noted for each site. Page 19 of 59 Equipment 1 The hydroprop and the impeller were used to measure the velocity of the River Holford. The impeller was attached to the hydroprop and were placed two thirds of the depth of the river in order to stop there being frictionbetween the impeller and the bed. The impeller turned and a stop watch was started, and stopped when the impeller stopped rotating.

It was ideal for these two measurements because it was rigid and very easy to read. It was also used to split the river up into 5 parts when we were finding out the gradient. Impellor and hydroprop 2. Tape measure 4. E-ruler Page 20 of 59 Secondary Data Secondary data is data that we have to rely on. I used a number of different sources such as, the internet and maps in order to support the primary data collected.

An ordnance survey map of the area around the River Holford was used to predict if the gradient was decreasing in order to strengthen the readings. Our gradient data was mostly secondary data because we did not physically take all of the eight measurements ourselves. We only measured one out of the eight sites. Weather information of Somerset was looked up on the internet to see if there was rain prior to our study.

If there was a lot of rain or no rain at all, then this factor would be taken into consideration when our data was analysed. This will show us whether my results occurred by chance and if we should accept or reject my hypotheses. It is in a wooded area with steep sides and there is a very obvious drop in gradient as you continue from the source to site 1.

Site 1 is a small stream which had very little depth and width because it had not rained prior to our trip. The clasts were all angular here and the geology was Devonian Quartzite. Site 2- The river at site 2 was very narrow but was getting deeper as predicted. The geology in this area was Quartzite and the gradient was decreasing. Direction of flow Direction of flow Angular clasts Page 22 of 59 Site 3- At this site, the river widened considerably when compared to site 2 but still stayed relatively the same depth.

The rock type was still Quartzite and there was non-coniferous woodland around the river. Site 4- At this site we were near to a settlement called Holford.

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The geology at this site was Marl. The cross sectional area also increased because we were in the middle course of the river. Site 6- At this site, there was a rapid increase in the velocity of the river. The environment here was very similar to that of site 1 because there were steep sides which were covered with dense trees and vegetation. The geology here was still Marl.

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Page 24 of 59 Site 7- This site was in the lower course of the river and was on Jurassic Limestone. The river had calmed down and its velocity decreased. The cross sectional area increased because we were in the lower course of the river.

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