Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


Geology and Geography

Committee Chair

Henry Rauch.


An 11 month investigation was undertaken to determine the nature of the flow system feeding Davis Spring. Davis Spring was monitored for stage, temperature and conductivity. Milligan Creek, a major infeeder to the system was also monitored. Quantitative and qualitative dye traces were performed to establish travel times through the system as well as further define drainage basin boundaries.;From tracer analysis, storm pulse travel time analysis and hydrograph peak analysis Davis Spring was determined to be an open flow conduit during most of the year. Exceptions may occur during the winter-spring when intense rain and meltwater may fill the system. Increased winter-spring discharge appears to flush out nearly all stored water in the system. Once removed, conductivity rises until the next winter when the cycle repeats.;Milligan Creek was found to be the closest major tributary of Davis Spring. Tracer travel times from Milligan Creek vary from 15 days at baseflow to 4 days during flood conditions. A large discrepancy was discovered between the Milligan Creek discharge the expected discharge for its catchment area. Additionally, a water budget for the period revealed unusually high evapotranspiration (80%) for the basin. Several possibilities exist for these discrepancies, and are discussed.;By utilizing previous and recent tracer tests a linear trend of distance to transport time was established for baseflow conditions. The exception to this was Wood Sink. A similar trend was not observed under flood conditions because travel time increases proportionally with precipitation.;Wood Sink was discovered to drain into Davis Spring. Tracer tests from Wood Sink require at least twice as long to reach Davis Spring as traces from farthest points of the basin. There is no firm explanation for why this occurs, but the influence of structural formations in the area may be responsible.