A training network for enhancing the understanding of complex physical, chemical and biological process interactions in hyporheic zones


3rd HypoTRAIN podcast out now!!!


The podcast gives insights into the second HypoTRAIN joint experiments in the summer of 2017. The ESRs conducted flume experiments to better understand the processes driving attenuation and degradation of micropollutants in river systems. Of course the focus was on the role of the hyporheic zone. Have fun watching!


New hypotrain publication out now!


New hypotrain publication out now! 

Ignacio (Nacho) and his co-authors just published a review paper on the "Interplay of hydrology, community ecology and pollutant attenuation in the hyporheic zone"! Here is the abstract:


  1. We describe the hierarchical interplay of hydrology, hyporheic ecology and transformation of nutrients and pollutants in the hyporheic zone (HZ). The exchange of water between the surface-subsurface generates the hyporheic exchange flow: the engine that drives the ecological functioning of the HZ. The magnitude and direction of hydrological fluxes in the HZ follow complex spatial patterns, strongly influenced by the temporal dynamics of surface flow in rivers.
  2. The direction and magnitude of hydrological fluxes also shapes the structure of hyporheic communities (hyporheos). During surface disturbances such as flooding or drought, benthic organisms may also use the HZ as a refuge, although the importance of this role is debated.
  3. Streambed organisms differ in their ability to colonize the HZ depending on the biological traits they possess. The reduction in oxygen concentration and pore size with increasing sediment depth imposes a limit on the distribution of macroinvertebrates, which are replaced by a suite of smaller organisms (meiofauna and protists) at deeper sediment layers. Therefore, a concomitant reduction in net biomass and productivity might be expected through depth. However, only a few studies have assessed the contribution of the hyporheos to whole system production, and they have focused only on the fraction of relatively large organisms.
  4. The bioreactor ability of the HZ to transform nutrients and pollutants is an important ecosystem service sustained by the life activities of hyporheos. Biofilms have the key role in this process due to their capacity to metabolize a wide range of dissolved compounds, including emerging pollutants. However, the residence time of water in pore sediments (resulting from hyporheic exchange flow) and the rest of the community (constantly reworking the sediments and grazing biofilms) are indirectly involved.


The full paper can be downloaded here: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S004896971732034X



Interactive map about Joint Field Experiments in Germany available

Joint Field Experiments (JFEs). Study site was the River Erpe, a lowland river receiving 42.500 m3 day-1 of treated waste water from a nearby treatment plant (dry weather conditions). During the daily peaks waste water represents 80% of the overall discharge of the river. The ESRs collaborated in a number of experiments and investigations which were conducted simultaneously in and at the river and its hyporheic zone. This interactive map introduces some of the ESRs and their work at the River Erpe:





This project is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (ITN) and has received funding from the European Union's EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020.