Azokh Cave, Lesser Caucasus, limestone, karstic geomorphology, electrical resistivity, epigenic, hypogenic.
Azokh Cave is located in the Lesser Caucasus and is hosted in Mesozoic
limestone. It comprises a series of karstic cavities, chambers and passageways
that interconnect to form a larger cave system. The geomorphology of the
currently accessible sectors of the karstic cave network at Azokh is presented here,
with many of its speleological features described in detail for the first time.
This information, coupled with data relating to the surface topography of the
internal cave infill, sheds light on the patterns of sediment infill within
cave system. Electrical resistivity tomography, total station coordinates and
topographic measurements made in the interior and at the exterior of this
labyrinthine cave system are all applied in this study to arrive at an accurate
description of its morphology. It remains unclear whether the cave formed from
epigenic or hypogenic speleological processes (or a combination of the two).
This question is further hampered by the presence of a large bat population in
the interior of the cave; the guano deposits of which have and continue to
modify the inner galleries.