The Lysina CZO is an experimental catchment to study the resilience of soil functions to acid deposition and other impacts in heavily managed forest land used for timber production. It represents managed land as an important economic asset where soil is under threat from industrial pollution. Situated in the Protected Area Slavkov Forest, 120 km W from Prague, 10 km N from Marienbad. The main focus is on description of long-term hydrobiogeochemical patterns in the magnesium-poor and acid-sensitive Lysina catchment. Individual tasks: study of element fluxes and pools, wet and dry deposition, internal recycling in trees, soil exchange processes, chemical weathering, nutritional status of trees and toxic metals speciations, modeling predictions of hydrologic, hydrochemical and soil chemical status. Research at Lysina started in 1988. Lysina is a member of the Czech network GEOMON and the three following international networks: ICP-Integrated Monitoring, ICP-Waters, ILTER One paired catchment (satellite site in the vicinity) was selected in 1991 as the second end-members of Norway spruce ecosystem sensitivity to acidic atmospheric deposition: acid resistant Pluhuv Bor underlain by ultramafic magnesium-rich serpentine.
The Lysina catchment is situated in the western part of the Czech Republic in the mountain area of the Slavkov Forest (Slavkovsky les). The Slavkov Forest is a Protected Landscape Area. The altitude of the Lysina catchment is between 829 and 949 m a.s.l., mean slope 11.5%, with an area of 27.3 ha. It is completely covered by managed Norway spruce (Picea abies) monocultures from the mid-19 century. Most of the catchment is covered by mature even-aged stands, remaining small areas are covered by young spruce and grasses (e.g. Calamagrostis villosa). The bedrock is coarse-grained leucogranite with only trace amounts of biotite. The catchment has never been glaciated. The dominant type of soil is podzolic brown forest earth. The catchment is drained by a stream, which springs about 900 m from the catchment outlet. Average annual precipitation and runoff are 950 and 419 mm, respectively. Mean annual temperature is 5°C. Since 1989, weekly runoff samples have been collected and more frequent records of flood events have been taken. Bulk precipitation and throughfall collectors were installed in 1990 and 1991, respectively. Since 1994 site belongs to GEOMON network of 14 monitored catchments, coordinated by Daniela Fottova from the Czech Geological Survey. Since 2002, Lysina belongs to the International Cooperative Program - Integrated Monitoring network (ICP IM; Finnish Environment Institute, Helsinki), since 2008 to the ICP-Waters (Norwegian Institute for Water Research, Oslo). Since December 2009, the Lysina catchment is one of the four European critical zone observatories financed through the EC SoilTrEC project (2009-2014). Since April 2010 Lysina also belongs to the International Long Term Ecological Research (ILTER) network. Large anthropogenic acidification in the 20th century caused a dramatic pH drop in drainage waters, soil nutrient leaching, elevated metal toxicity and suppressed dissolved organic carbon export. These unfavorable conditions implicate low aquatic and terrestrial biodiversity at the catchment. Due to granite bedrock and spruce monocultures, Lysina represents an extremely acid-sensitive catchment and experiences very slow recovery from acidification. Many papers have been published about the Lysina catchment itself or as a comparative study along with other catchments.