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The Flood Factors Song

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Published on Nov 4, 2014

David Shelley, Park Ranger at Congaree National Park, performs his original Flood Factors song on the dulcimer. The song is sung to the tune of “Funga Alafia,” a popular West African Drumming Song that is also adapted as “Little Liza Jane” in traditional American music.

Lyrics:

Over in the floodplain forest, down in Congaree
Floods come and go, but change in lots of ways, oh! Now you’ll see…

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality. (chorus)

Magnitude tells just how deep the flood waters do get.
A deep, deep flood is different from a shallow one, you bet.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Frequency tells just how often waters rise and fall.
A flood might flow ten times a year or maybe not at all.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Timing tells just “what’s the season?” when the waters flow.
A summer flood is different than a winter one, you know.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Duration tells just how long the flood waters do stay.
A flood might last a week or more or maybe just a day.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Rate tells just how fast the waters move then when they flow.
A fast, flash flood is different from one that’s rather slow.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Quality describes and measures water properties.
Things like hot, cold, clean, polluted, colored, clear, muddy.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

These changing factors tend to find a balance naturally.
That balance does define what’s called a flood regime you see.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

The floodplain forest needs a balanced flood regime to thrive, clean our water, clean our air and keep us all alive.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

People can do many things to alter this regime. We should think on how our actions change floods,it should seem.

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

Over in the floodplain forest down in Congaree
Floods come and go, but change in lots of ways, oh! Now you’ll see…

Floods have magnitude and frequency, Timing, duration, rate and quality.

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