Bio-geomorphologic Growth Process of Tamarix nabkha in the Hotan River Basin of Xinjiang

  • College of Geography Science and Tourism, Xinjiang Normal University, Urumqi 830054, China

Received date: 2006-03-28

  Revised date: 2007-04-10

  Online published: 2007-05-25

Supported by

National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40461002; Science Research Program for College and University in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, No.XJEDU2004I35


The characteristics of Tamarix shrub's plant ecology, community and environment and its regularities of distribution in space have been investigated in the Hotan River basin of Xinjiang. The shape data of 223 Tamarix nabkhas have been measured, and the structural characteristics of 4 Tamarix nabkha's sand driving wind have been observed at two field observational points. Based on the shape data surveyed and the sand flow materials observed, models of nabkhas have been made according to the proportion. In the wind tunnel, the flow patterns of different shapes of nabkhas have been imitated separately. The results indicated that Tamarix ecological type in the study area belongs to tugaic soil habitat which is based on soil of Populus and shrub forest. This habitat type can be further divided into three sub-habitats of juvenile, mature and post-mature Populus forests, in which Tamarix eco-geographical community is sequential succession. The change of ecological characteristics of Tamarix community in different sub-habitats induces variation of disturbance to sand flow and sand aggregation capability by Tamarix shrub in different stages. Therefore, the development of Tamarix nabkha presents phased succession. Compared with ecological characteristics and nabkha shapes of Phragmites and Alaghi, Tamarix shrubs can more intensely perturb wind-borne sand movement on the ground because of its longer life expectancy, the rigid shoot lignified, stool germination easily with endurance to be buried by sand and resistance to deflation. The wind speed section at the top of Tamarix nabkha is different from nabkhas of Phragmites and Alaghi.

Cite this article

LI Zhizhong, WU Shengli, WANG Xiaofeng, HE Mudan,GE Lin, MU Hetaer, XU Guoqiang . Bio-geomorphologic Growth Process of Tamarix nabkha in the Hotan River Basin of Xinjiang[J]. Acta Geographica Sinica, 2007 , 62(5) : 462 -470 . DOI: 10.11821/xb200705002


[1] Capot-Rey R Le vent et al. Modele eolien au Borkou, Traveaux de l'Institut de Recherches Sahariennes, 1957, 15: 155-157.

[2] Barbey C, Coute A. Croutes a cyanophycerew sur les dunes du Sahel mauritaneen. Bulletin de l'Institut fondemental de l'Afrique Noire, 1976, A38: 732-736.

[3] Warren A. A note on vegetation and sand movement in the Wahiba Sands, in Dutton, 1988, 251-255.

[4] El-Bana, M I Nijs I, KoCkelbergh F. Microenvironmental and vegetational heterogeneity induced by phytogenic nebkhas in an arid coastal ecosystem. Plant and Soil, 2002, 247: 283-293.

[5] Danin A. Plants of desert dunes. In: Cloudsley-Thompson J L (ed.). Adaptation of Organisms to the Desert. Heidelberg: Springer Verlag, 1996. 177.

[6] Hesp P, McLachlan A. Morphology, dynamics, ecology and fauna of Arctotheca populifolia and Gazania rigens nabkha dunes. Journal of Arid Environments, 2000, 44: 155-172.

[7] Zhu Zhenda, Chen Zhiping, Wu Zheng et al. The study of Taklimakan Desert landforms. Beijing: Science Press, 1981.
[朱震达, 陈治平, 吴正等. 塔克拉玛干沙漠风沙地貌研究. 北京: 科学出版社, 1981.]

[8] Zhu Zhenda, Chen Guangting et al. Sandy Desertification in China. Beijing: Science Press, 1994. 24.
[朱震达,陈广庭等 著. 中国土地沙质荒漠化. 北京: 科学出版社, 1994. 24.]

[9] Ling Yuquan, Qu Jianjun et al. Influence of sparse natural vegetation on sand-transporting quantity. Journal of Desert Research, 2003, 23(1): 12-18.
[凌裕泉, 屈建军等. 稀疏天然植被对输沙量的影响. 中国沙漠, 2003, 23(1): 12-18.]

[10] Mu Guijin. The environmental significance of vegetation cones of the Taklimakan Desert, China. Arid Zone Research, 1994, 11(1): 34-40.
[穆桂金. 塔克拉玛干沙漠灌草丘的发育特征及环境意义. 干旱区研究, 1994, 11(1): 34-40.]

[11] Mu Guijin. Types, origin and evolution of the vegetation cones of Taklimakan Desert. Arid Zone Research, 1995, 12 (suppl.): 31-37.
[穆桂金. 塔克拉玛干沙漠灌草丘类型、成因及演变规律. 干旱区研究, 1995, 12(增刊): 31-37.]

[12] Muhtar Qong, Hiroki Takamura, Mijit Hudaberdi. Formation and internal structure of Tamarix cones in the Taklimakan Desert. Journal of Arid Environments, 2002, 50: 81-97.

[13] Li Zhizhong, Wu Shengli, Sun Qiumei et al. Study on the nabkha in wind-tunnel flow field experiment (I). Journal of Desert Research, 2007, 27(1): 9-14.
[李志忠, 武胜利, 孙秋梅等. 新疆和田河流域灌丛沙堆风洞流场的实验研究 (一). 中国沙漠, 2007, 27(1): 9-14.]

[14] Li Zhizhong, Wu Shengli, Sun Qiumei et al. Study on the nabkha in wind-tunnel flow field experiment (II). Journal of Desert Research, 2007, 27(1): 15-19.
[李志忠, 武胜利, 孙秋梅等. 新疆和田河流域灌丛沙堆风洞流场的实验研究 (二). 中国沙漠, 2007, 27(1): 15-19.]

[15] Zhang Daoyuan, Pan Borong, Yin Linke. The photogeographical studies of Tamarix (Tamaricaceae). Acta Botanica Yunnanica, 2003, 25(4): 415-427.
[张道远, 潘伯荣, 尹林克. 柽柳科柽柳属的植物地理研究. 云南植物研究, 2003, 25(4): 415-427.]

[16] Hesp P. Foredunes and blowouts: Initiation, geomorphology and dynamics. Geomorphology, 2002, 48: 245-268.

[17] Ash J E, Wasson R H. Vegetation and sand mobility in the Australian desert dunefield. Zeitschrift fur Geomorphologie Supplementband, 1983, 45: 7-25.

[18] Cooke R U, Warren A, Goudie A S. Desert Geomorphology. London: UCL Press, 1993. 526.

[19] Hesp P. Morphodynamics of incipient foredunes in New South Wales, Australia. In: Brookfield M E, Ahlbrandt T S, (eds.). Elsevier, Amsterdam: Aeolian Sediments and Processes, 1983. 325-342.

[20] Livingstone I, Warren A. Aeolian Geomorphology: An Introduction. Harlow: Longman Singapore Publishers (Pte) Ltd., 1996. 116-119.

[21] Tengberg A. Nebkhas- Their spatial distribution, morphometry, composition and age- in the Sidi Bouzid area, central Tunisia. Zeitschrif fir Geomotpholgie, 1994, 38: 311-325.

[22] Tengberg A, Chen D. A comparative analysis of nebkhas in central Tunisia and northern Burkina Faso. Geomorphology, 1998, 22: 181-192.