On the characteristics of yugoslavian rivers in comparison with japanese rivers
ENDINS, n." 13.1987. Ciutat de Mallorca.
ON THE CHARACTERISTICS OF YUGOSLAVIAN
RIVERS IN COMPARISON WlTH
JAPANESE RIVERS
by Kazuo MITSUI *
Abstract
This article deals with the characteristics of rivers in Yugoslavia and Japan, based on the results
of the field survey and the data observed by the Hidrometeorological Institutes, F.R. of Yugoslavia.
Roughly speaking, the river systems in Yugoslavia are classified into two: the Danube (inclu-
ding the Sava, the Drava, etc.), a long, gentle current, and the Neretva and the Vardar, relatively
short, rapid ones. In the karst region, where the two river systerns mentioned above are included,
many discontinued rivers are found.
Seasonal changes of run-off amount of the rivers in Yugoslavia differ very much from those of
Japan, which show maximums in the typhoon season in auturnn or in the baiu (rainy) season in
early sumrner. In such rivers as the Sava and the Drava the coefficient of river regime is less than
30, and the level of water becomes higher in April through June due to melting of snow and from
November to December by rainfall. The water level is the lowest in July and August.
Because of the high seepage and flowing-out characteristics in the karst regions the run-off ra-
tios of the rivers in Yugoslavia are relatively high, ranging approximately from 60 to 90 %; as an
extreme case, the Una showc a value of 112 %. The velocity of floodwaves in the case of a great
flood of the Sava, a tributary of the Danube, was 0.6-0.7 m/sec for a distance of 680 km. from the
river head to Beograd. A similar value, 0.7 m/sec, was obtained for the Drava. The water level chan-
ges more widely in the lower course than in the upper course of the Sava. However, the coefficient
of river regime is rather small probably because the current velocity is relatively low. In contrast to
this, the floodwaves of Japanese rivers generally travel more rapidly at a rate of more than 3 m/sec
or even 10 m/sec on some occasions.
The water temperature of the Sava is nearly constant in February, being about 1°C both in the
upper and lower courses. In August it is 12-13°C in the upper course, gradually becomes higher in
the lower basin, rising up to 25°C in Beograd. It is found that there is a close relationship between
the levels of underground and river waters along the course of the Sava river.
The water quality of the Yugoslavian rivers, for instance, total hardness, Ca hardness, total solid
and pH contents are much higher than Japanese rivers and, on the contrary, CI and Si02 contents
are lower.
Resumen
Este artículo trata sobre las características de los rios en Yugoslavia y en Japón, basándose en
los resultados de estudios de campo y de la información recopilada por los Institutos Hidrometeoro-
lógicos de la Rep. Fed. de Yugoslavia.
En líneas generales, los sistemas fluviales de Yugoslavia son clasificados en dos tipos: el Danu-
bio (incluyendo el Sava, el Drava, etc.), de larga extensión y corriente lenta, y un segundo tipo de
ríos relativamente cortos y rápidos como el Neretva y el Vardar. En las regiones del Karst, donde
los sistemas fluviales arriba mencionados están presentes, existen muchos rios de carácter discon-
tinuo.
Respecto a los cambios estacionales en la cantidad de agua circulante, los rios yugoslavos di-
fieren mucho si se les compara con los rios japoneses, los cuales muestran máximos durante la
temporada de tifones en otoño o durante la temporada lluviosa (baiu) a principios del verano. En
ríos tales como el Sava y el Drava el coeficiente del régimen del río es menor de 30, y el nivel del
agua sube de Abril a Junio debido al deshielo y a partir de Noviembre hasta Diciembre debido a la
precipitación pluvial. El nivel del agua alcanza su punto más bajo en los meses de Julio y Agosto.
Como consecuencia de la elevada infiltración y efluencia que caracteriza a las regiones del
Karst, los indices de circulación (run-off ratios) en los rios de Yugoslavia son relativamente altos,
cifrándose entre un 60 y un 90 % aproximadamente; como un caso extremo, el río Una muestra un
Hosei University. Tokyo, Japan.

valor de 112 %. La velocidad de las olas de crecida durante una gran inundación del río Sava,
afluente del Danubio, fue de 0,6-0,7
m/seg en una distancia de 680 kilómetros, desde la cabecera
del río hasta Belgrado. Un valor similar fue obtenido durante una crecida de río Drava. Los niveles
del agua cambian más ampliamente en el curso bajo del Sava que río arriba. Sin embargo, el coefi-
ciente del régimen del río es más bien pequeño debido quizás a que la velocidad de la corriente es
lenta. Al contrario de lo anterior, las olas de crecida de los ríos japoneses avanzan más deprisa, a
una velocidad que supera los 3 m/seg o incluso los 10 m/seg en algunas ocasiones.
La temperatura del agua en el rio Sava es casi constante en Febrero, siendo de aproximada-
mente 1°C tanto en el curso alto como río abajo. En el mes de Agosto es de 12-13OC en la parte de
la cabecera del río, elevándose gradualmente aguas abajo hasta llegar a 25OC en Belgrado. Se com-
prueba que existe una fuerte correlación entre los niveles de las aguas subterráneas y de las aguas
del río a lo largo del curso del Sava.
La calidad del agua en los ríos de Yugoslavia, por ejemplo la dureza total, el contenido en cal-
cio, la cantidad total de sólidos y el pH dan valores mucho más altos que en los ríos japoneses, y
por el contrario, la clorinidad y el contenido en Si01 con inferiores.
1. lntroduction
This article deals with the characteristics of ri-
vers in Yugoslavia, a widely developed karst region
and Japan, a volcanic country, based on the results
of the field survey and the data observed by the
Hidrometeorological Institutes, F.R. of Yugoslavia.
Roughly speaking, the river systerns in Yugos-
lavia are classified into two: the Danube (including
the Sava, the Drava, etc.), a long, gentle current,
and the Neretva and the Vardar, relatively short,
rapid ones. In the karst region, where the two river
systems mentioned above are included, many dis-
continued rivers are found (Figs. 1-6).
Figure 2. Distribution of Volcanic front around Japan (by Sugi-
mura).
1 : active volcano. 2: other quaternary volcano.
Figure 1. Distribution of the river systems in Yugoslavia.
1: frontier. 2: watershed. 3: river. 4: observation point.
5: city.

Figure 3. Distribution of analysed water quality of Japanese
Rivers.
by Dr. J. Kobayashi (1960).
Figure 5. Distribution of limestone and Karst region, and rnain
rivers in Yugoslavia.
1: east boundary Karst region. 2: limestone.
Discussion
1) Run-off percentage and coefficient
of river regime
Seasonal changes of run-off arnount of the ri-
vers in Yugoslavia differ very rnuch frorn those of
Japan, which show rnaxirnurns in the typhoon sea-
son in auturnn or in the baiu (rainy) season in early
surnrner. In such rivers as the Cava and the Drava
Figure 4. Distribution of limestone and rnain stalactitic cave in
the coefficient of the river regirne is less than 30,
Japan.
and the level of water becornes higher in April and
1: Akiyoshi. 2: Hirao. 3: Taisyaku. 4: Shikoku. 5: Ryu-
continues until June due to rnelting of snow and
ga. 6: Atetsu. 7: Ryusen. 8: Akka. 9: Toma. 10: Naka-
tonbetsu.
from November to Decernber due to rainfall. The
water level is the lowest in July and August (Fig.
7).
Figure 6. Longitudinal profile of main rivers in Yugoslavia.

DRAVA
V R V A S
VARDAR
B O S N A
ARAKAWA (Japan)
SAVA
DRINA
V. MORAVA
UNA
,
N E R E T V A
Figure 7. Seasonal change of run-off arnount (average of 1956-
1966) of the rnain rivers in Yugoslavia and R. Arakawa
in Japan.
Due t o the high seepage and flowing-out cha-
upper and lower courses. In August it is 12-13°C in
racteristics in the karst regions the run-off ratios of
the upper course, gradually becoming higher in the
the rivers ii
I Yugoslavia are relatively high, ranging
lower basin, rising up to 25°C in Beograd. It has
approximately from 60 to 90 %; as an extreme
been discovered that there is a close relationship
case, the Una shows a value of 112 % (Table 1).
between the levels undergound and river waters
along the course of the Sava river (Fig. 8).
2) The velocity of floodwaves
The velocity of floodwaves in the case of the
great flood of the Sava, a tributary of the Danube,
Cm
was 0.6-0.7 m/sec for a distance of 680 km from
600-
the river head to Beograd. A similar value, 0.7
P -
m/sec, was obtained for the Drava. The water level
m
changes more widely in the lower course than in
400-
the upper course of the Sava. However, the coeffi-
S
i
-
cient of the river regime is rather small probably
m
P m-
2 . % - 0 . 7 6 ~
because the current velocity is relatively low. In
r
r = + 0 . 7 5
m
contrast to this, the floodwaves of Japanese rivers
e
m
-
r
generally travel more rapidly at a rate of more than
NO. 1
o -
3 m/sec or even 10 m/sec on some occasions.
-100
I
I
I
I
I
1
I
I
I
I

1000
800
600
400
200
3) The water temperature
U.G.WATER LEVEL
The water temperature of the Sava is nearly
Figure 8. Relationship between groundwater level and river wa-
constant in February, being about 1°C both in the
ter in Sava river basin.

4) The water quality
The water quality of the yugoslavian rivers, for
exarnple, total hardness, Ca hardness, total solid
and pH contents are rnuch higher than Japanese
rivers but contrary to this, CI and Si02 contents are
lower.
5) The characteristics of the lnland-water
in Slovenia
1. Alrnost al1 parts of Slovenia are on the Di-
naric Karst with rnountains, hills and plateaus of
limestone which belonas to the Pre-Cretaceous De-
-
riod. It's typical topography includes doline, uvala,
Figure 9. Distribution of the river systems and obsewated
ponor, karren and stalactitic caves. For this reason,
points in Sovenia.
river water ofien flows into the ground and then
springs out and sornetirnes flow into the caves
again. .
2. The river systerns can be roughly classifiea
rnuch higher than Japanese rivers and, on the con-
into two the Vipava and SoCa River systems in the
trary, CI and Si02 contents are lower (Table 2).
western part and the Ljubljana and Cava systerns
4. It seerns that the flow of surface water as
in the eastern part of the country. The river sys-
well as cave water is closely related to rainfall, this
terns in the former part tend to continue to run on
relation to the systerns is not yet clear.
the ground surface for long distances. On the other
5. Changes in the quality of water, particu-
hand, those in the latter part seern to have been
larly the hardness, are related to the run off
developed by the Reka, Pivka and Unica Rivers,
arnount and ternpeature, but .this does not rnean
which run into caves several times and it is difficult
that an increase in water flow by rainfall rnay
t o determine, where the end of the river is (Fig. 9).
cause a lowering in the concentration of the corn-
3. In cornparing the quality of the water sys-
ponents of water. In the case of the cave water the
terns of the Vipava and SoEa Rivers wifh that of
relationship is more cornplicated by the varying
Ljubljana and Sava Rivers, we find that the regio-
depths of the ground surface to the water, and ty-
nal difference of the total hardness and total solid
pes of vegetation land over the caves.
are higher in the latter systerns. However, both of
6. As rnentioned by Prof. lvan Garns, the lime-
thern have cornrnon characteristics of the rivers
stone in this area has a corrosion intensity of more
running in the Karst region: that is, their total hard-
than 50-60 rn3/krn2. Sornetirnes more than 100 rn3/
ness, Ca hardness, total solid and pH contents are
km2 in a certain srnall area, which has rnuch annual
Figure 10. Regional distribution of solution in Karst region, Yu-
goslavia (by Prof. l. Garns).

A
B
C
D
E
F

Wien
Danube
- -
4
-
Maribor
Drava
0.121
0.57
29 111,850
Radece
Sava
0.215
0.57
28 111,400
Metlika
Kupa
0.151
0.61
81
-
Martin Brod
Una
0.179
1.12
53
-
Banja Luka
Vrbas
0.107
0.76
27
-
Usora
Bosna
0.109
0.59
57
-
Zvornik
Drina
0.133
0.85
26
-
Ljub Most
V. Morava
0.242
0.33
36
-
Solkan
Sota
0.188
0.80
91
-
Konjic
Neretva
0.244
0.94
55
11460
Radusa
Vardar
0.266
0.80
11
1'1500
Basel
Rhein
-
-
14
-
París
3
Seine
-
-
p
34
-
resde den
2, Elbe
- -
82
-
O CD
Pittsburgh
- Ohio
- - 364
-
Minnesota
Mississippi
-
- 119
-
Kawaguchi
Arakawa
0.177
0.78
149
-
L
Tome
g Kitakami
- - 223
-
Kajikasawa
2 Fujikawa
- - 400
-
Kunhashi
Tonegawa
-
- 850
-
Table 1 : River regimes of the main rivers in Yugoslavia and others
A. obse~ation
place
B. river name
C. ratio of seasonal changes of run-off amount of rivers
D. run-off percentage
E. coefiicient of the river regime
F. river-bed slope
Ca
Mg
Na
K
HCO,
HCO,
SO,
CI
SiO,
Fe
PO,
NO,-N
NH,-N evaporation suspended
mgll
mgll
mgll
mgll
mgll
mell
mgll
mgll
mgll
mgll
mgll
mgA
mgll
residue
matter
mgll
mgll
Hokkaido
8.3
2.3
9.2
1.45
33.9
0.55
10.7
9.0
23.6
0.50
0.01
0.54
0.06
87.9
76.9
(22 rivers)
Tohoku
7.7
1.9
7.3
1.06
19.9
0.33
17.6
7.9
21.5
0.49
0.01
0.26
0.06
79.1
18.6
(35 rivers)
Kanto
12.7
2.9
7.3
1.43
42.4
0.69
15.9
6.1
23.1
0.23
0.03
0.29
0.08
93.5
22.1
(11 rivers)
Chubu(centralpart)
8.9
1.7
4.8
1.05
30.1
0.49
7.7
3.9
13.7
0.14
0.02
0.18
0.05
62.0
26.9
(42 rivers)
Kinki
7.6
1.3
5.5
1.04
27.4
0.45
7.4
5.3
12.1
0.11
0.01
0.21
0.04
56.8
20.0
(28 rivers)
Chugoku (western part)
6.7
1.1
6.5
0.94
27.2
0.45
4.4
6.6
14.1
0.05
0.00
0.20
0.03
56.7
7.4
(25 rivers)
Shikoku
10.6
1.5
3.8
0.66
37.2
0.61
5.7
2.4
9.8
0.01
0.00
0.12
0.02
5i.0
6.1
(19 rivers)
Kyusyu
10.0
2.7
8.6
1.84
40.9
0.67
13.1
4.6
32.2
0.13
0.04
0.20
0.04
106.0
29.8
(43 rivers)
All Japan
8.8
1.9
6.7
1.19
31.0
0.51
10.6
5.8
19.1
0.24
0.02
0.26
0.05
. 74.8
29.2
(225 nvers)
Table 2: Average river water quality of each region in Japan
(by J. Kobayashi, 1960)

Figure 11. Distribution of evaporation residue of the rivers in
Slovenia (in winter, 1970).
rainfall and dense forests (Figs. 10, 11).
pollution load is not very great at present.
7. Even in a country town like AjdovSEina, the
8. Similar characteristics to these are found
river water is polluted to a great extent, when it
in Akiyoshi Cave, a typical karst region of Japan.
flows through the urban area. However, it is self-
But these similarities are small, if we compare
purified and becomes as clean as it was during the
them in detail with those in the whole region of
time flowing down several kilometers, because the
Slovenia.