The Tarland catchment is the uppermost tributary of the River Dee (NE Scotland) which is under intensive land management. The tributary has a number of pressures associated with diffuse pollution, alteration of river morphology and a rural community with a high proportion of private septic tanks. This has led to issues of nutrients, water quality and impaired ecology. In relation to aquatic ecology the whole Dee catchment is designated for its importance for species such as Freshwater Pearl Mussel and economically-important Salmonid fish species. Additionally, the community has suffered recent flooding and, in response to these many impacts, has shown some excellent examples of community led initiatives in natural flood management and riparian habitat improvement. A decade of research into both the natural functioning and improvements in the catchment has given a wealth of data and knowledge that will enable testing of models for biophysical and socio-economic aspects of catchment management.
About the Author: