HYDROMORPHOLOGY OF ANOMALOUS BRIGHT LOAMY SOILS ON THE MID-ATLANTIC COASTAL PLAIN
Zurheide, Philip Klaus
Rabenhorst, Martin C
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Some loamy textured soils along the Mid-Atlantic coastal plain undergo extended periods of saturation or ponding, yet lack the hydromorphology that identifies them as hydric by any of the currently approved Field Indicators of Hydric Soils (FI). Termed Anomalous Bright Loamy Soils (ABLS), these were identified at four research sites on the Delmarva Peninsula. The hydrologic and biogeochemical status of these soils was monitored for three years along a hydrosequence at each site. A series of field and lab experiments were run to investigate the possible causes for the ABLS-phenomenon. The most likely cause is a combination of low hydrologic gradient coupled with the length of time since saturation. Using observed morphology, a newly developed Field Indicator successfully discriminated between five hydric soils that lacked an approved indicator and those that were not hydric. This indicator has now been approved as an official FI of Hydric Soils (F20).