Flood detention, nature development and water quality along the lowland river Sava, Croatia

MJ Baptist, M. Haasnoot, P. Cornelissen, J Icke, G van der Wedden, HJ de Vriend, G Gugic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The construction or designation of detention areas along lowland rivers is considered along many European rivers. Since Croatia accommodates large detention areas, both natural (e.g., Mokro Polje) and controlled (Lonjsko Polje), it serves as an excellent example for planned detention areas elsewhere in Europe. This modelling study focuses on the controlled detention area of Lonjsko Polje. The flooding characteristics of the area are assessed in combination with the vegetation development and the transport and storage of sediment and phosphorus. Results of the modelling show that it is not so much the intake capacity that determines the flood duration time of a detention area, but the drainage capacity. A too long inundation duration following a flood event is shown to lead to major shifts in the vegetation composition. The results further indicate that about 30% of the sediment and adsorbed phosphorus that enters the detention area during an extreme (1:100 years) flood is retained within the area; this is about 10% of the total sediment and adsorbed phosphorus load of the Sava. Results of this study can be used to properly design and manage detention areas along lowland rivers.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)243-257
Number of pages15
JournalHydrobiologia: the international journal on limnology and marine sciences
Publication statusPublished - 2006


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