University of Minnesota
College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences
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Department of Soil, Water, and Climate

Randall Kolka | 218-326-7115
Department of Soil Water and Climate
USDA Forest Service 
Northern Research Station
Grand Rapids, MN 55744
1831 Hwy 169 E


B.S.1990University of Wisconsin - Stevens PointSoil Science
M.S.1993University of MinnesotaSoil Science
Ph.D.1996University of MinnesotaSoil Science

I conduct watershed or landscape level soil and hydrological research involving upland, riparian and wetland soil carbon, mercury and nutrient dynamics and relating these studies to upland land use and pollution transport to surface waters.  I investigate ecosystem restoration and the linkages between upland and riparian or wetland communities.  Also, I study the functions and implications of global climate change.

Graduate Programs:
Soil Science
Forest Resources

Selected Publications:
Kastendick, D.N., E.K. Zenner, B.J. Palik, R.K. Kolka, and C.R. Blinn. 2012. Effects of harvesting on nitrogen and phosphorus availability in riparian management zone soils in Minnesota, USA. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 42: 1784-1791.

Helmers, M.J., X. Zhou, H. Asbjornsen, R. Kolka, M.D. Tomer, and R.M. Cruse. 2012. Sediment removal by perennial filter strips in row-cropped ephemeral watersheds. Journal of Environmental Quality, 41(5): 1531-1539.

Parsekian, A.D., L. Slater, S.D. Sebestyen, R.K. Kolka, D. Ntarlagiannis, J. Nolan, and P. Hanson. 2012. Comparison of uncertainty in peat volume and soil carbon estimated using GPR and probing. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 76(5): 1911-1918.

Jurgensen, M., R. Tarpey, J. Pickens, R. Kolka, and B. Palik. 2012. The long-term effects of silvicultural thinnings on soil carbon and nitrogen pools. Soil Science Society of America Journal, 76: 1418-1425.

Mitchell, C.P.J., R.K. Kolka, and S. Fraver. 2012. The singular and combined effects of blowdown, salvage logging and wildfire on forest floor and soil mercury pools. Environmental Science and Technology, 46: 7963-7970.

Powers, M.D., R.K. Kolka, J.B. Bradford, B.J. Palik, S. Fraver, and M.F. Jurgensen. 2012. Carbon storage across a chronosequence of thinned and unmanaged red pine stands. Ecological Applications, 22(4): 1297-1307.

Gabriel, M., R. Kolka, T. Wickman, L. Woodruff, and E. Nater. 2012. Latent effect of soil organic matter oxidation on mercury cycling within a southern Boreal ecosystem. Journal of Environmental Quality, 41:495-505.

Kolka, R.K., A. Steber, K.N. Brooks, C.H. Perry, and M.D. Powers. 2012. Relationships between soil compaction following aspen harvests and harvest season, soil texture, and landscape position. Northern Journal of Applied Forestry, 29(1): 21-25.

Kolka, R.K., B.J. Palik, D.P. Tersteeg, and J.C. Bell. 2011. Effects of riparian buffers on hydrology of northern seasonal ponds. Transactions of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE), 54(5): 2111-2116.

Kolka, R.K., S.S. Sebestyen, E.S. Verry, and K.N. Brooks (Eds.). 2011. Peatland Biogeochemistry and Watershed Hydrology at the Marcell Experimental Forest. CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, 488 pp.