Prof Stephen Tooth

Geography BSc degree from the University of Southampton

PhD in Physical Geography from the University of Wollongong, Australia.

Prof Stephen Tooth


Contact Details


Professor Stephen Tooth graduated with a Geography BSc degree from the University of Southampton and completed a PhD at the University of Wollongong, Australia. He undertook post doctoral work at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, before joining DGES (formerly IGES) in April 2000.



Group Affiliation


Research Interests

Geomorphology and sedimentology, especially in the drylands of Australia and southern Africa. Particular research themes include: anabranching rivers; floodplains and floodouts; wetlands in drylands; channel-vegetation interactions; bedrock-influenced rivers; controls on gully erosion; long-term fluvial landscape development; palaeoenvironmental change; global climate change and the Anthropocene; and the use of drylands on Earth as analogues for Martian surface environments.

Current PhD Students

: Sioned Llywelyn (co-supervised with Dr Hywel Griffiths and Dr Cerys Jones)

: Julian Ruddock (co-supervised with Professor John Harvey, School of Art)

: Zacc Larkin (Macquarie University, Sydney: co-supervised with Dr Tim Ralph and Professor Kirstie Fryirs)

Research Groups


A nested hierarchical perspective to enhance interpretations and communication in fluvial geomorphology for use in water resources management: Lessons from the Okavango Delta, BotswanaFryirs, K. A., Ralph, T. J., Larkin, Z. T., Tooth, S., Humphries, M., McCarthy, T., Hesse, P. P. & Mosimanyana, E. 2018 In : Geographical Journal.184, 2, p. 192-207
Applying Independent Component Analysis on Sentinel-2 Imagery to Characterize Geomorphological Responses to an Extreme Flood Event near the Non-Vegetated Rio Colorado Terminus, Salar de Uyuni, BoliviaLi, J., Yang, X., Maffei, C., Tooth, S. & Yao, G. 2018 In : Remote Sensing.10, 5, 725
Morphodynamic simulation of sediment deposition patterns on a recently stripped bedrock anastomosed channelMilan, D., Heritage, G., Entwistle, N. & Tooth, S. 2018 In : Proceedings of the International Association of Hydrological Sciences.377, p. 51-566 p.
The geomorphology of wetlands in drylands: Resilience, non-resilience, or …?Tooth, S. 2018 In : Geomorphology.305, p. 33-48
Morphodynamics of bedrock-influenced dryland rivers during extreme floods: insights from the Kruger National Park, South AfricaMilan, D., Heritage, G., Tooth, S. & Entwistle, N. 2018 (Accepted/In press) In : Geological Society of America Bulletin.
‘May God place a bridge over the River Tywi’: interrogating flood perceptions and memories in Welsh medieval poetryGriffiths, H., Salisbury, E. & Tooth, S. 2017 Cultural Histories, Memories and Extreme Weather : A Historical Geography Perspective. Endfield, G. & Veale, L. (eds.). Taylor & Francis, p. 93-111 (Routledge Research in Historical Geography)
Chapter 2.1 - Geomorphology and Sediment Regimes of Intermittent Rivers and Ephemeral StreamsJaeger, K. L., Sutfin, N. A., Tooth, S., Michaelides, K. & Singer, M. 2017 Intermittent Rivers and Ephemeral Streams: Ecology and Management. Datry, T., Bonada, N. & Boulton, A. J. (eds.). Academic International Press, p. 21-4929 p.
Searching for an Anthropo(s)cene in the uplands of mid WalesGriffiths, H., Goodwin, G., Keevil, T., Salisbury, E., Tooth, S. & Roberts, D. 2017 In : GeoHumanities.3, 2
The Interplay Between Extrinsic and Intrinsic controls in Determining Floodplain Wetland Characteristics in the South African DrylandsLarkin, Z. T., Ralph, T. J., Tooth, S. & McCarthy, T. 2017 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.42, 7, p. 1092-110922 p.
Timescales, mechanisms, and controls of incisional avulsions in floodplain wetlands: insights from the Tshwane River, semiarid South AfricaLarkin, Z. T., Tooth, S., Ralph, T. J., Duller, G. A. T., McCarthy, T., Keen-Zebert, A. K. & Humphries, M. 2017 In : Geomorphology.283, p. 158-172
The geomorphology of the Anthropocene: emergence, status and implicationsBrown, A. G., Tooth, S., Bullard, J. E., Thomas, D. S. G., Chiverrell, R. C., Plater, A. J., Murton, J., Thorndycraft, V. R., Tarolli, P., Rose, J., Wainwright, J., Downs, P. & Aalto, R. 2017 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.42, 1, p. 71-90
The sky is the limit: Reconstructing physical geography from an aerial perspectiveWilliams, R., Tooth, S. & Gibson, M. 2016 In : Journal of Geography in Higher Education.41, 1, p. 134-146
Visualising geomorphology: improving communication of data and concepts through engagement with the artsTooth, S., Viles, H. A., Dickinson, A., Dixon, S. J., Falcini, A., Griffiths, H. M., Hawkins, H., Lloyd-Jones, J., Ruddock, J., Thorndycraft, V. R. & Whalley, B. 2016 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.41, 12, p. 1793-1796
Cosmogenic 3HE Measurements Provide Insight into Lithologic controls on Bedrock Channel Incision: Examples from the South African InteriorKeen-Zebert, A., Tooth, S. & Stuart, F. M. 2016 In : Journal of Geology.124, 3
Temporal observations of a linear sand dune in the Simpson Desert, central Australia: Testing models for dune formation on planetary surfacesCraddock, R. A., Tooth, S., Zimbelman, J. R., Wilson, S. A., Maxwell, T. A. & Kling, C. 2015 In : Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets.120, 10, p. 1736-1750
Comparison of paired quartz OSL and feldspar pIRIR dose distributions in poorly bleached fluvial sediments from South AfricaColarossi, D., Duller, G. A. T., Roberts, H. M., Tooth, S. & Lyons, J. R. 2015 In : Quaternary Geochronology.30, B, p. 233-238
New investigations at Kalambo Falls, Zambia: Luminescence chronology, site formation, and archaeological significanceDuller, G. A. T., Tooth, S., Barham, L. & Tsukamoto, S. 2015 In : Journal of Human Evolution.85, p. 111-125
Origin and development of theater-headed valleys in the Atacama Desert, northern Chile: Morphological analogs to martian valley networksIrwin III, R. P., Tooth, S., Craddock, R. A., Howard, A. D. & Baptista de Latour, A. 2014 In : Icarus.243, p. 296-310
Late Quaternary climatic changes revealed by luminescence dating, mineral magnetism and diffuse reflectance spectroscopy of river terrace palaeosols: a new form of geoproxy data for the southern African interiorLyons, J. R., Tooth, S. & Duller, G. A. T. 2014 In : Quaternary Science Reviews.95, p. 43-5917 p.
Pothole growth dynamics in mixed bedrock-alluyvial rivers: Importance for fluvial landscape development under changing environmentsGriffiths, H., Tooth, S. & Richardson, J. 2013
Processes and rates of bedrock erosion in Welsh rivers and the implications for long-term landsacpe developmentRichardson, J., Tooth, S. & Griffiths, H. 2013 p. 286
Floods, drought and human-environment interactions in the writing of the Welsh diaspora in the new geographical frontier of PatagoniaTooth, S. & Griffiths, H. 2013
Controls On the Genesis, Sedimentary Architecture, and Preservation Potential of Dryland Alluvial Successions In Stable Continental Interiors: Insights from the Incising Modder River, South AfricaTooth, S., Hancox, P. J., Brandt, D., McCarthy, T. S., Jacobs, Z. & Woodborne, S. 2013 In : Journal of Sedimentary Research.83, 7, p. 541-561
Floods, drought and human-environment interactions in the writing of the Welsh diaspora in PatagoniaGriffiths, H. & Tooth, S. 2013
Ffurf a phroses ar safleoedd craigwely afonydd gorllewin Cymru a'u potensial ar fel safleoedd geo-dreftadaethGriffiths, H., Tooth, S. & Richardson, J. 2013
Google EarthTM in geomorphology: re-enchanting, revolutionising, or just another resource?Tooth, S. 2013 Treatise on Geomorphology. Shroder, J. (ed.). Elsevier, Vol. 14
Late Quaternary floodplain reworking and the preservation of alluvial sedimentary archives in unconfined and confined river valleys in the eastern interior of South AfricaKeen-Zebert, A., Tooth, S., Rodnight, H., Duller, G. A. T., Roberts, H. M. & Grenfell, M. 2013 In : Geomorphology.185, p. 54-6613 p.
Dryland fluvial environments: assessing distinctiveness and diversity from a global perspectiveTooth, S. 2013 Treatise on Geomorphology. Shroder, J. F. (ed.). 1 ed.Elsevier, Vol. 9, p. 612–644
The Anthropocene: is there a geomorphological case?Brown, A. G., Tooth, S., Chiverrell, R. C., Rose, J., Thomas, D. S. G., Wainwright, J., Bullard, J. E., Thorndycraft, V. R., Aalto, R. & Downs, P. 2013 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.38, 4, p. 431–434
Chronology and controls of donga (gully) formation in the upper Blood River catchment, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa: Evidence for a climatic driver of erosionLyons, J. R., Tooth, S. & Duller, G. A. T. 2013 In : Holocene.23, 12, p. 1875-188713 p.
The Kufrah paleodrainage system in Libya: A past connection to the Mediterranean Sea?Paillou, P., Tooth, S. & Lopez, S. 2012 In : Comptes Rendus Geoscience.344, 8, p. 406-414
Drainage network development in the Keanakāko‘i tephra, Kīlauea Volcano, Hawai‘i: Implications for fluvial erosion and valley network formation on early MarsCraddock, R. A., Howard, A. D., Irwin III, R. P., Tooth, S., Williams, R. M. E. & Chu, P. 2012 In : Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets.117, E8, E08009
Arid geomorphology: Changing perspectives on timescales of changeTooth, S. 2012 In : Progress in Physical Geography.36, 2, p. 262-284
Late Holocene development of a major fluvial discontinuity in floodplain wetlands of the Blood River, eastern South AfricaTooth, S., McCarthy, T., Rodnight, H., Keen-Zebert, A., Rowberry, M. & Brandt, D. 2012 In : Geomorphology.205, p. 128–141
The origin and development of the Nyl River floodplain wetland, Limpopo Province, South Africa: trunk–tributary river interactions in a dryland settingMcCarthy, T. S., Tooth, S., Jacobs, Z., Rowberry, M. D., Thompson, M., Brandt, D., Hancox, P. J., Marren, P. M., Woodborne, S. M. & Ellery, W. N. 2011 In : South African Geographical Journal.93, 2, p. 172-190
Distinctiveness and diversity of arid zone riversTooth, S. & Nanson, G. C. 2011 Arid Zone Geomorphology: Process, Form and Change in Drylands. Thomas, D. S. G. (ed.). 3 ed.Wiley, p. 269-30032 p.
The character, origin and palaeoenvironmental significance of the Wonderkrater spring mound, South AfricaMcCarthy, T. S., Ellery, W. N., Backwell, L., Marren, P., Klerk, B. D., Tooth, S., Brandt, D. & Woodborne, S. 2010 In : Journal of African Earth Sciences.58, 1, p. 115-12612 p.
The role of geomorphology in evaluating remediation options for floodplain wetlands: the case of Ramsar-listed Seekoeivlei, eastern South AfricaMcCarthy, T. S., Tooth, S., Kotze, D. C., Collins, N., Wandrag, G. & Pike, T. 2010 In : Wetlands Ecology and Management.18, 2, p. 119-13416 p.
The 4th International Palaeoflood Workshop and Trends in Palaeoflood ScienceWoodward, J. C., Tooth, S., Brewer, P. & Macklin, M. 2010 In : Global and Planetary Change.70, 1-4, p. 1-44 p.
Holocene flooding and river development in a Mediterranean steepland catchment: The Anapodaris Gorge, south central Crete, GreeceMacklin, M., Tooth, S., Brewer, P., Noble, P. L. & Duller, G. A. T. 2010 In : Global and Planetary Change.70, 1-4, p. 35-5218 p.
Late Quaternary dynamics of a South African floodplain wetland and the implications for assessing recent human impactsTooth, S., Rodnight, H., McCarthy, T. S., Duller, G. A. T. & Grundling, A. 2009 In : Geomorphology.106, 3-4, p. 278-29114 p.
Arid geomorphology: emerging research themes and new frontiersTooth, S. 2009 In : Progress in Physical Geography.33, 2, p. 251-28737 p.
Invisible geomorphology?Tooth, S. 2009 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.34, 5, p. 752-7543 p.
WET-origins: Controls on the distribution and dynamics of wetlands in South Africa: Water Research Commission (WRC) Report Ellery, W., Grenfell, M. C., Grenfell, S., Kotze, D., McCarthy, T. S., Tooth, S., Grundling, P. L., Beckendahl, H., Le Maitre, D. & Ramsay, L. 2009 Water Research Commission. 100 p. (Wetland Management Series)
Mapping of a major paleodrainage system in eastern Libya using orbital imaging radar: The Kufrah RiverPaillou, P., Schuster, M., Tooth, S., Farr, T., Rosenqvist, A., Lopez, S. & Malezieux, J-M. 2009 In : Earth and Planetary Science Letters.277, 3-4, p. 327-3337 p.
Riparian vegetation and the late Holocene development of an anabranching river: Magela Creek, northern AustraliaTooth, S., Jansen, J. D., Nanson, G. C., Coulthard, T. J. & Pietsch, T. 2008 In : Geological Society of America Bulletin.120, 7-8, p. 1021-103515 p.
Arid geomorphology: recent progress from an Earth System Science perspectiveTooth, S. 2008 In : Progress in Physical Geography.32, 1, p. 81-10121 p.
Arid geomorphology: investigating past, present and future changesTooth, S. 2007 In : Progress in Physical Geography.31, 3, p. 319-33517 p.
Wetlands in drylands: geomorphological and sedimentological characteristics, with emphasis on examples from southern AfricaTooth, S. & McCarthy, T. S. 2007 In : Progress in Physical Geography.31, 1, p. 3-4139 p.
Chronology and controls of avulsion along a mixed bedrock-alluvial riverTooth, S., Rodnight, H., Duller, G. A. T., McCarthy, T. S., Marren, P. M. & Brandt, D. 2007 In : Geological Society of America Bulletin.119, p. 452-46110 p.
Theoretical modeling of stream potholes based upon empirical observations from the Orange River, Republic of South AfricaSpringer, G. S., Tooth, S. & Wohl, E. E. 2006 In : Geomorphology.82, 1-2, p. 160-17617 p.
A comparison of mud- and sand-dominated meanders in a downstream coarsening reach of the mixed bedrock-alluvial Klip River, eastern Free State, South AfricaMarren, P. M., McCarthy, T. S., Tooth, S., Brandt, D., Stacey, G. G., Leong, A. & Spottiswoode, B. 2006 In : Sedimentary Geology.190, 1-4, p. 213-22614 p.
Assessing the reproducibility and accuracy of optical dating of fluvial depositsRodnight, H., Duller, G. A. T., Wintle, A. G. & Tooth, S. 2006 In : Quaternary Geochronology.1, 2, p. 109-12012 p.
Optical dating of a scroll-bar sequence on the Klip River, South Africa, to derive the lateral migration rate of a meander bendRodnight, H., Duller, G. A. T., Tooth, S. & Wintle, A. G. 2005 In : Holocene.15, 6, p. 802-81110 p.
Controls on the transition from meandering to straight channels in the wetlands of the Okavango Delta, BotswanaTooth, S. & McCarthy, T. S. 2004 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.29, 13, p. 1627-164923 p.
Forms and processes of two highly contrasting rivers in arid central Australia, and the implications for channel-pattern discrimination and predictionTooth, S. & Nanson, G. C. 2004 In : Geological Society of America Bulletin.116, 7-8, p. 802-81615 p.
Anabranching in mixed bedrock-alluvial rivers: the example of the Orange River above Augrabies Falls, Northern Cape Province, South AfricaTooth, S. & McCarthy, T. S. 2004 In : Geomorphology.57, 3-4, p. 235-26228 p.
Geological controls on alluvial river behaviour: a comparative study of three rivers on the South African HighveldTooth, S., Brandt, D., Hancox, P. J. & McCarthy, T. S. 2004 In : Journal of African Earth Sciences.38, 1, p. 79-97
Geological controls on the formation of alluvial meanders and floodplain wetlands: the example of the Klip River, eastern Free State, South AfricaTooth, S., McCarthy, T. S., Brandt, T., Hancox, P. J. & Morris, R. 2002 In : Earth Surface Processes and Landforms.27, 8, p. 797-81519 p.