The sources of streamwater to small mountainous rivers in Taiwan during typhoon and non-typhoon seasons

Tsung Yu Lee*, Nien Ming Hong, Yu Ting Shih, Jr Chuan Huang, Shuh Ji Kao

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The dynamics and behaviors of streamwater chemistry are rarely documented for subtropical small mountainous rivers. A 1-year detailed time series of streamwater chemistry, using non-typhoon and typhoon samples, was monitored in two watersheds, with and without cultivation, in central Taiwan. Rainwater, soil leachate, and well water were supplemented to explain the streamwater chemistry. The concentrations of fluoride, chloride, sulfate, magnesium, potassium, calcium, strontium, silicon, and barium of all the water samples were measured. Principal component analysis and residual analysis were applied to examine the mechanisms of solute transport and investigate possible sources contributing to the streamwater chemistry. In addition to the influence of well water and soil leachate on streamwater chemistry during non-typhoon period, overland flow and surface erosion affect streamwater chemistry during the typhoon period. The latter has not been discussed in previous studies. Surface erosion is likely to be an end member and non-conservatively mixed with other end members, resulting in a previously unobserved blank zone in the mixing space. This has a particularly great impact on small mountainous watersheds, which suffer from rapid erosion. Moreover, fertilizer contaminates agricultural soil, making soil water end members more identifiable. To our knowledge, this study is the first to clearly illustrate the dynamics and sources of streamwater chemistry of small mountainous rivers that are analogous to rivers in Oceania.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)26940-26957
Number of pages18
JournalEnvironmental Science and Pollution Research
Issue number35
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec 1


  • End member
  • Hydrology
  • Mixing model
  • Streamwater chemistry
  • Taiwan
  • Typhoon

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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