Word to describe small "caves"

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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Cheryl Jones » Oct 11, 2009 6:23 pm

Teresa wrote:
Squirrel Girl wrote:
Joints and overhangs aren't karst, so any reference to karst doesn't work for me.


But both joints and overhangs (aka "rock shelters" in the original post) "may" be karst, though they aren't necessarily so.
if one said karsted joint or karst overhang, those could be correct.


SOCKs! Small Open Cavities in Karst! :banana: :big grin:
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Joseph W. Dixon » Oct 11, 2009 10:19 pm

Someone already mentioned "mesocavern". I have personally seen the terms "microcavern" and "mesocavern" used in at least one published refereed paper. Unfortunately, I can't remember off the top of my head what paper that was.

My vote would be for mesocavern.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Jagdmann » Oct 12, 2009 7:57 am

Cheryl Jones wrote:
Teresa wrote:
Squirrel Girl wrote:
Joints and overhangs aren't karst, so any reference to karst doesn't work for me.


But both joints and overhangs (aka "rock shelters" in the original post) "may" be karst, though they aren't necessarily so.
if one said karsted joint or karst overhang, those could be correct.


SOCKs! Small Open Cavities in Karst! :banana: :big grin:




:yikes: :shrug:
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby wyandottecaver » Oct 12, 2009 12:30 pm

unfortunately mesocavern implies a middle cavern, or midsized cavern just as micro cavern implies a very small one. Neither would differentiate between caverns connected or NOT connected to the surface as was specified.
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Joseph W. Dixon » Oct 12, 2009 3:14 pm

If you Google micro, meso, or macro-cavern you get several hits. It appears these terms have also been used in a few published, referreed papers. I believe I originally saw these terms in a paper published by Howarth (1983), but I can't find my copy of it so I can't confirm where these terms come from.

Microcavern - do not exceed 0.1 cm in diameter or cross section
Mesocavern - greater than 0.1 cm but less than or equal to 20 cm in diameter or cross section
Macrocavern - greater than 20 cm in diameter or cross section

I would say these terms come close to what SG is looking for ["I am looking for a single word (or very short phrase or even an acronym) to describe all small, cave-like cavities in the earth, regardless of origin-but with an opening to the surface. Can anyone come with a word that encompasses small "caves," "karst features" (in the lingo of the NPS), vugs, enlarge joints, rock shelters, etc?"].

In my opinion, it would be pointless to reinvent the wheel. If the terms already exist and have been accepted (i.e. they have appeared in peer reviewed published papers), I wouldn't see a reason to invent a new term or terms (but that is just my opinion).

The only drawback I can see is it doesn't meet SG's criteria of a single term (she would have to use both micro and meso to describe the features).



Howarth, F. G. 1983. Ecology of Cave Arthropods. Annual Review of Entomology 28:365 - 389.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Squirrel Girl » Oct 12, 2009 3:24 pm

Image
What a fine
  • Macrocavern
  • SOCKs! Small Open Cavities in Karst!
  • Cavelet
  • geospace
  • proto-cave
  • earth hole
  • Lead
  • Potential dig
  • Dry holes
  • karstivots
  • karstimples
  • innies
  • den
  • karsthole
  • punt
  • wannabe

Not that I criticize anyone for having fun with an internet thread, but I did post this in "Speleology" so "innie" and "potential dig" really don't qualify.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby wyandottecaver » Oct 12, 2009 3:34 pm

the picture confuses me. The giant open air canyon doesnt seem to fit. It looks like a maybe kinda hole in the shadow of the lower left that might?
I'm not scared of the dark, it's the things IN the dark that make me nervous. :)
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Squirrel Girl » Oct 12, 2009 3:42 pm

wyandottecaver wrote:the picture confuses me. The giant open air canyon doesnt seem to fit. It looks like a maybe kinda hole in the shadow of the lower left that might?

It's an overhang. Now that I've gone back to my OP, I see I didn't specifically list those, but, yes, those are part of what I'm trying to lump with all the others.

Also, this isn't my picture. Just a "random" internet shot I've linked to. But it does kinda show how references to "karst" are not too good. And I believe this is Kaibab Limestone in the picture.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Jagdmann » Oct 12, 2009 10:08 pm

Joseph W. Dixon wrote:In my opinion, it would be pointless to reinvent the wheel. If the terms already exist and have been accepted (i.e. they have appeared in peer reviewed published papers), I wouldn't see a reason to invent a new term or terms (but that is just my opinion).


Fortunately this kind of thinking went out when they found out the world wasn't flat, it made people think that there might just be something else or something more out there.
The explorers/inventors of the past scoffed at the idea that things had to be finite/final. New finds, new ideas, new terms and maybe even new worlds, etc.....(but that's just my opinion). :shhh: :big grin:
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Jagdmann » Oct 12, 2009 10:16 pm

Squirrel Girl wrote:Image
What a fine
  • Macrocavern
  • SOCKs! Small Open Cavities in Karst!
  • Cavelet
  • geospace
  • proto-cave
  • earth hole
  • Lead
  • Potential dig
  • Dry holes
  • karstivots
  • karstimples
  • innies
  • den
  • karsthole
  • punt
  • wannabe

Not that I criticize anyone for having fun with an internet thread, but I did post this in "Speleology" so "innie" and "potential dig" really don't qualify.


Didn't like mine, huh? :shrug:
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Squirrel Girl » Oct 13, 2009 4:39 am

rptyd wrote:
Didn't like mine, huh? :shrug:

I gave up after a while. I liked several, but some of them weren't technically correct for what I'm doing.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Anonymous_Coward » Oct 14, 2009 3:00 pm

Grotto has too much of a karst implication to me. I had been using "vug" but my boss (and other remote sensing types) think it's an acronym that needs defining.


Well, since we are splitting hairs....

Vug is not an acronym. It is a real English word derived from the Welsh word for cave.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Squirrel Girl » Oct 14, 2009 4:06 pm

jaa45993 wrote:
Grotto has too much of a karst implication to me. I had been using "vug" but my boss (and other remote sensing types) think it's an acronym that needs defining.


Well, since we are splitting hairs....

Vug is not an acronym. It is a real English word derived from the Welsh word for cave.

I did, indeed, explain that it isn't an acronym. I didn't know it was Welsh, but I defined it for him.
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby pub » Oct 31, 2009 11:44 pm

Many terms in speleology come from Latin roots or borrowed from other disciplines, so how about:

  • caveola (s), caveolae (pl) – A micropinocytotic vesicle.
  • cavernulous – Full of little cavities or holes; such as, cavernulous metal.
  • cavitas – A hollow space or concavity in an organ, part, or structure; often designating only a potential space; a cavity.
Balincaguin comes from the Zambal phrase, "Bali lan caguing" meaning "house of bats."
This was the former name of the Municipality of Mabini, Pangasinan, when it was part of the Province of Zambales (of Mt. Pinatubo Volcano fame).
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Re: Word to describe small "caves"

Postby Cheryl Jones » Nov 1, 2009 8:24 pm

cavitas

I like it! :goodjob:

And if it's a serious little void, then it could be a cavitas with gravitas! :big grin:

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