KWRRI Research Reports


A methodology is developed to determine expected sediment trapping in riparian vegetative filter strips considering channelization of flow. The framework consists of defining the channel network stochastically, with deposition/detachment in each channel being modeled deterministically. The two approaches were then combined to develop a model which could predict expected trapping efficiencies for vegetative filters under known field conditions. The model was then extended to include conditions such as rainfall on the filter so as to make it applicable to generic field situations.

Field and laboratory studies were conducted to collect and estimate data to develop and evaluate the model. sediment concentrations were measured for natural vegetative filters located on a slope of 8.7%, subjected to inflows from upslope bare soil plots. Surface elevations were measured for the filter. Flow networks and channel shapes were defined by applying the digital elevation model to the micro-relief data. Actual distributions and standard fitted distributions for channel flows and channel shapes were developed.

Model evaluation was done for selected values of Manning's n to give predicted filter trapping efficiencies within 2% of the observed, indicating model validity. Sensitivity analysis was conducted using the general model and the fitted probability distributions.

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