Sunday, 13 May 2012

Mapping the status of upland peat using aerial photographs

This report has been prepared by Penny Anderson Associates for Natural England and it provides an interesting view of the status of upland peat in England.  It should be noted that the main report has reviewed data taken from aerial photos and much of report considers the ground-truthing exercise that was carried out to validate the main conclusions.

Table 3 on p17 shows the total area of peat affected by each activity: 55.8% has not had any management input, 24% has been burnt, and 15.2% has been gripped.

The regional variations on p17 provide an interesting comparison between the  management inputs that have taken place in different parts of the country.

The conclusions on p24 of the Report provide a useful overview.

It is interesting to note that although the report was intended to cover the areas of deep peat, 27% of the sites where ground-truthing took place had  a peat depth <0.4m.  Maybe this lends weight to the view that we need to look at all peat soils, shallow as well as deep, and move away from the fixation on blanket bog, which has never been defined satisfactorily.

Note the link to all the current upland reports published by Natural England from the webpage link above.

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