The Tarland Catchment Initiative and Its Effect on Stream Water Quality and Macroinvertebrate Indices
2012 (English)In: Journal of Environmental Quality, ISSN 0047-2425, Vol. 41, no 2, 314-321 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The Tarland Catchment Initiative is a partnership venture between researchers, land managers, regulators, and the local community. Its aims are to improve water quality, promote biodiversity, and increase awareness of catchment management. In this study, the effects of buffer strip installations and remediation of a large septic tank effluent were appraised by water physico-chemistry (suspended solids, NO3, NH4, soluble reactive P) and stream macroinvertebrate indices used by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency. It was done during before and after interventions over an 8-yr period using a paired catchment approach. Because macroinvertebrate indices were previously shown to respond negatively to suspended solid concentrations in the study area, the installation of buffer strips along the headwaters was expected to improve macroinvertebrate scores. Although water quality (soluble reactive P, NH4) improved downstream of the septic tank effluent after remediation, there was no detectable change in macroinvertebrate scores. Buffer strip installations in the headwaters had no measurable effects (beyond possible weak trends) on water quality or macroinvertebrate scores. Either the buffer strips have so far been ineffective or ineffectiveness of assessment methods and sampling frequency and time lags in recovery prevent us detecting reliable effects. To explain and appreciate these constraints on measuring stream recovery, continuous capacity building with land managers and other stakeholders is essential; otherwise, the feasibility of undertaking sufficient management interventions is likely to be compromised and projects deemed unsuccessful.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
American society of Agronomy, Inc , 2012. Vol. 41, no 2, 314-321 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-71280DOI: 10.2134/jeq2010.0537ISI: 000300851200003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-71280DiVA: diva2:448464