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Narcisse Wildlife Management Area Sinkhole
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member BarbershopDru
N 50° 44.006 W 097° 31.712
14U E 603840 N 5621214
Quick Description: The karst topography and sinkholes here have long been a haven for snakes! When the weather turns cold, they enter the underground caverns via SINKHOLES!
Location: Manitoba, Canada
Date Posted: 9/12/2007 4:36:36 PM
Waymark Code: WM26H8
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member caverspencer
Views: 91

Long Description:
The Narcisse Wildlife Managed Area (WMA) is well known for its extremely high snake population.
But the main reason why so many snakes are present at this location derives from the geology of the area.

The Narcisse WMA includes ridge-and-swale topography common to the Interlake. This creates a mixture of elevations and in some areas the soil gets noticeably thinner, and in places the porous limestone bedrock is even exposed. Portions of the area were formerly grazed, hayed and cultivated, but were proven to be unsuitable.

Wherever limestone or other carbonate rocks are exposed to the surface, chemical reactions with rain water can quickly dissolve the rock and create caves and sinkholes. This is what is called karst topography.

One of the main reason so many snakes are present in the area is the presence of this karst topography which provides roomy chambers for them to den together in.
The winters here can be pretty cold sometimes dipping below 30 degrees Celsius, but the caverns stay just above freezing keeping the snakes alive.

Karst is defined as a landscape formed by solutions of carbonate, creating limestone and dolomite bedrock. Common features of such landscapes are caves, sinkholes, and underground streams. A large proportion of the rainfall sinks immediately into the rocks and runs in channels underground. The higher land is dry; few streams flow upon its surface and even these may suddenly sink into the ground and disappear.

The Southern Interlake is underlain by carbonate bedrock (limestone, dolomitized limestone and dolostone) which has been modified by recent glaciation. Glaciation shielded or sealed bedrock from erosion by depositing thick layers of glacial debris. In some cases, glaciation left open bedrock or thin layers of debris permitting the development of karst both on the surface and underground.

During the glacial recession, melt waters are deeply injected into the karst aquifers, thus accelerating their formation.

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