Ditch maintenance in drained peatland forestry – good or bad?

Cleaning of ditches to maintain an adequate water table is a common practice in peatland forestry. Ditch maintenance promotes forest growth by keeping the water table at favourable level but as a negative side effect it increases nutrient and sediment loads to waterways. In Finland, scientists have examined the trade-off between increased harvest revenues and declined water quality due to

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Excess nitrogen from agriculture may reduce variation of diatom species in streams

Researchers at the University of Oulu and the Finnish Environment Institute have addressed the question on how diatoms in rivers respond to different nutrient conditions. Interestingly, they found that high concentrations of dissolved inorganic nitrogen seem to reduce the species variability, probably because sensitive taxa disappear, while certain tolerant taxa can survive. Phosphorus is traditionally believed to be the limiting

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Nationwide study: Forests along rivers improve ecological condition

There is increasing evidence that forested riparian corridors improve the ecological status of freshwaters, but this Finnish study takes one step further and looks at the effect on a national scale. The scientists used data from more than 900 river water bodies in Finland. They found that the ecology of small to medium sized rivers in an agricultural landscape benefitted

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BIOWATER’S METTE V. CARSTENSEN RECEIVES UNIVERSITY OF AARHUS’ PHD AWARD

BIOWATER is proud to announce that our former PhD student, now post doc, Mette Vodder Carstensen, is one of five talented researchers that received Aarhus University Research Foundation’s PhD Award for 2020. We can only say, well deserved, Mette! The assessment criteria of the Aarhus University PhD programme include the excellent quality of the thesis and the general efforts of

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TREES ALONG HEADWATER STREAMS PROTECT AQUATIC ECOLOGY

Can trees along agricultural headwater streams improve the aquatic ecology and habitat quality? This question was asked by four scientists from Finnish and Canadian institutes. And their answer is: Yes, they can! The authors set out to study the effects on ecology of riparian land use. To do this, they studied 11 paired forested and open agricultural headwater stream reaches.

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Catch up on sediments to understand particulate phosphorus processes

PhD student Hannah Wenng and co-authors recently published a paper where they study catchment processes of particle mobilisation and transport. In arable land, phosphorus losses are often closely linked to sediment losses, which means that a better understanding of the sediment-runoff processes is important to select the most optimal and targeted mitigation measures to reduce eutrophication. Hannah installed turbidity sensors

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Increased carbon and nitrogen concentrations in boreal forested catchments

Brownification of waters is a threat to aquatic ecosystems over large areas in Europe. A new paper links increasing concentrations of dissolved organic carbon to climate, deposition, and land-use, and the complex interactions between them. The authors studied 12 small forested headwater catchments in Finland, with monitoring records from 1990 to 2019. The catchments had a large gradient of climate

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