Bencrom River - United Kingdom
UK Upland Waters Monitoring Network (UK UWMN) site. The Bencrom River lies in the Mourne Mountains of County Down, south-eastern Northern Ireland. The catchment area is 216 ha and rises from 140 m where the river meets the Silent Valley Reservoir to a maximum of 700 m at Slieve Meelbeg. The underlying geology is fine-grained granite with localised superficial boulder clay drift. Soils are dominated by blanket peats which are eroding in the upper part of the catchment. Moorland species characterised by Calluna, Molinia, and Sphagnum mosses, comprise the catchment vegetation, with Pteridium in the lower reaches indicating land-use disturbance in the past. Contemporary land-use and management is confined to low-intensity sheep grazing and infrequent heather burning. The annual rainfall is c. 1800 mm. Note: The area is the size of the catchment.
General Characteristics, Purpose, History
Originally part of a network monitoring the quality of acid waters in the UK. Now the purpose is to track changes in surface water quality and freshwater biodiversity across all upland regions of the UK, not only those sensitive to acid deposition. The aim is to monitor the separate and combined impacts of all principal pressures facing upland waters, including acid deposition, nutrient-N deposition, climate change, toxic substance contamination and land-use change.
Affiliation and Network Specific Information