Reedbed Construction for Water Cleaning (Managing Wetlands for Wildlife - Implementing Management Plan)
|Type of technique||Health & Management / Managing Wetlands for Wildlife / Implementing Management Plan / Techniques:|
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|Description||The following notes are
intended as a summary description of some key aspects of reedbeds, based on B93 (Chapter
14). Experts/expert texts should be consulted prior to the construction of a reedbed
system for water treatment.
Chains of "cells" may be constructed, with most of the silt settling in the first cell, which may then be periodically de-silted. For treatment of wastewater, at least two parallel series of cells are suggested, to allow flow to continue through one series while maintenance work is being carried out on the other.
In an overland (surface flow) system, a shallow depth of water passes above ground through the litter layer of the reedbed. In a subsurface (horizontal flow) system, wastewater filters through a porous sediment (e.g. gravel) in which the reeds are growing.
Suitable emergent plants for use in reedbed systems have an extensive growing period, produce a deep leaf litter layer, exhibit dense even growth (reduces channel formation) and develop an extensive root/rhizome system (assists in substrate aeration).
Construction with a level surface and a very shallow (about one degree) slope of bed appears best to produce a uniform flow across/through the entire area.
Correct siting of the inflow and outflow should allow the whole system to operate using gravity.
Management requirements should be minimal once the reed bed is established
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|Legal and Ethical Considerations||A license for water abstraction may depend on reaching stringent conditions of cleanliness prior to returning the water to the source (B11.33.w1).|
|References||B11.33.w1, B93.10, B93.14|
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