To provide baseline data for climate manipulation experiments in 11 small (30–268 m2) headwater catchments at Storgama, Telemark County, Southern Norway, we assessed the natural variability in site characteristics and runoff quality. Annual average concentrations in runoff at the sites have coefficients of variation between 26–61%, with the smallest values for total organic carbon (TOC) and carbon to nitrogen (C/N) ratios and the largest for inorganic nitrogen (N). The catchments have between two and five times higher concentrations of inorganic N, TOC, and total phosphorus than the larger (0.6 km2) Storgama watershed nearby. Concentrations of TOC and TON in runoff tend to increase with soil C and N content and with the volume of soil in the catchment. For nitrate (NO3) and ammonium in runoff, the reverse is true. In wet years the proportion of bare rock is a major predictor for the annual average NO3 concentration in runoff.
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Vol. 37 • No. 1