Site managers at both our Cairngorms and Moor House ECN sites recently hosted international research visits as part of the eLTER Transnational Access scheme. The scheme enables research access to over 40 sites long-term ecosystem research (LTER) sites across Europe.
Two science teams visited the Cairngorms site. The focus of the first group from the Dead Sea and Arava Science Center, Israel (led by Elli Groner), was to study climate change impacts on above and below ground activity of arthropods. Specifically, they investigated the impact of a reduction of snow days on above and below ground arthropod activity at the site, which is a sub-alpine mountainous area. They collected specimens from the soil surface via pitfall traps and from soil samples, and their sampling included areas with late-lying snow beds, as well as adjacent open slopes. They also made use of existing ECN monitoring and research data.
The second team was from the Université de Lorraine, France, and was led by Marie-Noëlle Pons. They visited the Cairngorms site first, before travelling south to Moor House in the North Pennines. At both sites they collected water samples as part of an assessment of the optical characteristics of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in streams at the two sites. They later compared these with samples from streams under similar climate and land cover type (mixed forest, moors) in the Vosges Mountains of France.
Some of the days during both visits were quite long and involved a lot of walking. The weather conditions at times were also challenging, but overall, both visits were successful. We hope they will lead to valuable new insights into environmental processes.
Many of our long-term monitoring and research sites welcome visiting researchers, who can take advantage of knowledgeable site staff and a wealth of long-term environmental datasets. Find out more by visiting our Sites section. You can also explore available ECN data and read details of the monitoring we conduct at sites.
We are grateful to our visitors for choosing our sites as locations for their research, and also to our site managers (Chris, Jan and Bev) for looking after our visitors during their stays.