Deforestation and Rapid Erosion along Penns Creek: Shamokin, PA
The eroding sediment consists of a mixture of soil (Holly-Wheeling-Basher Association) composed of Pleistocene age glacial outwash and fine-grained alluvial sediments that overlie the Devonian age limestone from the Onondaga and Old Port Formations. Nearly 11 cm of sediment along the south facing bank of the creek has been eroded since February. Erosion rates decrease higher on the slope where transport of sediment has buried the spikes. The slope angle has changed from nearly 56° to 52° and 36° to 31° since measurements were first collected.
New, high light intensity forms of rapid growing, disturbance-linked vegetation cover the bank (poison ivy, poison oak, and Japanese knot weed) while the stream environment has also been influenced. Increased light levels and a lack of cover are influencing the organisms both along and in the stream. The loss of the vegetation along the creek was due to poor land planning and communication with government agencies and could have been handled in a more proper manner with less environmental impact.