Details
Caves in clastic rocks (Muğla, SW Türkiye)

Kırıntılı kayaçlı mağaralar (Muğla, GB Türkiye)

Authors
Mutlu ZEYBEK, Murat GÜL, Fikret KAÇAROĞLU, Ergun KARACAN, Ahmet ÖZBEK

Keywords
Cave, Conglomerate, Mudstone, Late Miocene-Pliocene

Abstract

Caves evolution is controlled by lithological properties, discontinuities, water, climate, and physicomechanical properties of soluble rocks, vegetation and human impact. This study investigates the cave formation in Upper Miocene-Pliocene clastic rock in Menteşe town of Muğla. The lithology, physico-mechanical properties and hydrogeologic factors of host rocks and morphology of the caves in Asar Hill and Damlam stream valley were examined. The caves are 1.47-9.71 m long, 2.24- 19.36 m wide and 1.38-27 m high. Four joint sets and bedding planes affect the clastics in the Asar Hill area. Mudstones (low plasticity clay, sandy clay) are in soft-very soft rock, while conglomerate is in moderate-hard rock class. The mudstone removal has started the formation of the caves. The vegetation roots act as groundwater circulation paths in the Damlam stream area. Water has eroded mudstone and muddy matrix of conglomerate following cracks and led to the formation of the caves. Water infiltration may have led to stalactite, flowstone and travertine formation in Damlam stream caves. Possible cave collapse could threaten life and property in the Asar Hill area, and may cause the destruction of internal structures of the caves in the Damlam stream. Thus, precautionary measures such as continuous monitoring and protection must be taken in both cave areas.
 

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