Distribution by Scientific Domains
Distribution within Life Sciences

Kinds of Scotland

  • and scotland
  • central scotland
  • eastern scotland
  • ireland and scotland
  • ne scotland
  • north-east scotland
  • north-west scotland
  • northern scotland
  • northwest scotland
  • nw scotland
  • southern scotland
  • west scotland
  • western scotland

  • Selected Abstracts


    Arthur Midwinter
    This paper appraises the theory and practice of Best Value Audit in Scotland, and in particular the central assumption that a robust performance management system is essential for continuous improvement in service delivery, within a rational planning model of governance. The reviews of Best Value Audit in practice reveal important gaps between theory and practice, with an overemphasis on monitoring process rather than performance. There is, therefore, considerable scope to reduce the demands of the audit process on local government, and Best Value Audit, needs to move from a theoretical model to an evidence-based model of good practice if real progress is to be made. [source]


    ABSTRACT. Geomorphological and sedimentological evidence of former glaciation in the Bizzle valley in the Cheviot Hills of northern England and southern Scotland was used to reconstruct the dimensions of a small topographically constrained glacier with an equilibrium line altitude (ELA) of 535 m. This was interpreted as having formed during Younger Dryas cooling; this is the only glacier to have been described from the area and is the most easterly site of Younger Dryas glaciation in the British Isles. Whilst glaciation at this time was extensive in the Lake District to the southwest, the restricted nature of Cheviot ice cover suggests that a steep west,east precipitation gradient existed in this region during the Younger Dryas. [source]


    Summary. A new overview of the broch and wheelhouse-building cultures is offered because recent comparable attempts have omitted substantial amounts of relevant data, such as discussion of the most plausible broch prototypes and of the details of the material cultural sequence, particularly the pottery. Well dated Early Iron Age roundhouse sites have often been described, but promontory forts of the same period, showing the specialized broch hollow wall, have not. The example at Clickhimin, Shetland, is now reliably dated to the sixth century BC at the latest and the associated pottery shows clear links with north-west France. Another unexcavated example in Harris can be restored in some detail and shows how these sites were probably used. The pivotal role of Shetland in the emergence of the new culture is confirmed by the early dating of the broch at Old Scatness to the fourth/third centuries BC. However, a separate development of the round broch tower seems also to have occurred in the west, in the third/second centuries BC. English Early Iron Age pottery is also prominent in some of the earliest sites in the west and north. The picture is of a dynamic, maritime zone open to influences from several remote regions. [source]


    PALAEONTOLOGY, Issue 4 2007
    Abstract:, Soft-tissue preservation of the hind gut, or anal sac, in the tegmen of Tubulusocrinus (gen. nov.) doliolus (Wright) from the Mississippian (Visean, Asbian) Pittenweem Formation at St Andrews, Scotland, is the first of its kind known in crinoids; it sheds important new light on the nature of the cladid tegmen. Many cladid crinoids had a calcite-plated anal sac that may have functioned like a chimney to prevent fouling of the ambulacra. The tubular, uncalcified anal sac of Tubulusocrinus may have functioned like a hose by pointing down current between the arms to avoid fouling of the ambulacra. Its smaller size may also have required less energy to produce than a heavy-plated sac. The hind gut is apparently preserved by haematite replacement, which was probably altered from original authigenic pyrite that formed soon after catastrophic burial. [source]

    Protective factors for youth considered at risk of criminal behaviour: does participation in extracurricular activities help?

    Jodi M. Burton
    Background There is a lack of research investigating the potential protective effect of participation in extracurricular activities on youth who are at risk of engaging in delinquent activity. Aim This study examined the potential for participation in extracurricular activities to act as a protective factor for youth deemed at risk of engaging in delinquent activity. Method One hundred and sixty-nine secondary students from Glasgow, Scotland completed two questionnaires (the Youth Self-Report and an additional information sheet) requesting information about their participation in extracurricular and delinquent activities as well as their possible risk factors. Activities included sports, non-sports (hobbies and games), current activities (youth clubs and other organisations) and previous involvement in activities. Risk factors included residing in a broken home, having four or more siblings, academic failure and lacking a nonparental very important person. Delinquent activities included rule-breaking and aggressive behaviours. Results Independent samplest-tests found that females participated in significantly more non-sports and previous activities than males and that males participated in significantly more rule-breaking behaviour than females. Hierarchical multiple regression analyses found that gender and participation in sports were strong predictors of rule-breaking behaviour. A significant positive correlation was found between participation in sports and involvement in aggressive behaviour. Conclusion The results suggest that participation in extracurricular activities does not act as a protective factor for youth, regardless of whether or not they are considered to be at risk of engaging in delinquent activity. The significant correlation found between participation in sports and involvement in aggressive behaviour suggests that youth participation in sports may act as a risk factor. Copyright © 2005 Whurr Publishers Ltd. [source]

    A survey of female patients in high security psychiatric care in Scotland

    Dr Lindsay D.G. Thomson MD MPhil MRCPsych Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychiatry Honorary Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist
    Background The State Hospital, Carstairs, is the sole high security psychiatric facility for Scotland and Northern Ireland. Method This study compares the female (n = 28) and male (n = 213) patients resident there between 1992 and 1993 using data derived from case-note reviews and interviews with patients and staff. Results Nearly three-quarters of both the male and female populations had a primary diagnosis of schizophrenia, and secondary diagnoses of substance abuse and antisocial personality disorder were common. Female patients were more frequently admitted from other psychiatric hospitals, had less serious index offences and more minor previous convictions, and were less likely to be subject to a restriction order. They had more often experienced depressive symptoms and had significantly greater histories of self-harm, physical and sexual abuse. At interview, nearly three-quarters had active delusions and over half had recently behaved in an aggressive manner. Almost 90% were said not to require the security of the State Hospital. Conclusions It was concluded that mental illness and adverse social circumstances had combined to create a very disadvantaged group of women in high security psychiatric care in Scotland. As a group these women were inappropriately placed and their requirement was for intensive, rather than high security psychiatric care. Copyright © 2001 Whurr Publishers Ltd. [source]

    Alternative media in Scotland: Problems, positions and ,Product'

    CRITICAL QUARTERLY, Issue 4 2000
    Chris Atton

    A longitudinal observational study of insulin therapy and glycaemic control in Scottish children with Type 1 diabetes: DIABAUD 3

    DIABETIC MEDICINE, Issue 11 2006
    Scottish Study Group for the Care of the Young with Diabetes
    Abstract Objective/background, Our objective was to investigate glycaemic control in children with Type 1 diabetes in Scotland and to analyse the effect of changing ,conventional' insulin regimen strategies on outcome. DIABAUD 2 (1997,1998) (D2) demonstrated that average glycaemic control in young people with Type 1 diabetes in Scotland was poor, with mean HbA1c of 9.0%. Over 90% were then treated with a twice-daily insulin regimen. The aim of DIABAUD 3 (2002,2004) (D3) was to determine if control had improved, and to examine changes in insulin regimen and effects on glycaemic control. Methods, In DIABAUD 3, data were collected prospectively on children aged < 15 years. in nine out of 15 centres throughout Scotland. HbA1c on 986 subjects was measured in a single Diabetes Control and Complications Trial-aligned laboratory. The results were compared with those from DIABAUD 2, for the same nine centres. Multiple regression comparison was performed to adjust for imbalance in relevant confounders (e.g. age, duration, height and weight, insulin dose and centre). Results, For D3, the age range was 1.1,14.9 years (62% aged 10,14 years), mean (± sd) HbA1c 9.2% ± 1.5 (compared with D2, 9.0% ± 1.5). Only 9.7% achieved the target of HbA1c < 7.5%. The number of subjects in D3 on twice-daily injections was 51% (compared with 94% in D2), 43% on three-times-daily injections (2% in D2) and 2.3% on four or more (1.9% in D2): HbA1c did not differ in these groups. In both the D2 and D3 cohorts, HbA1c rose with age. After adjustment for other variables in the combined datasets, insulin regimen was not a significant predictor of HbA1c (F = 0.19, d.f. = 3, 1774; P = 0.90). Conclusion, The glycaemic control in young people in Scotland remains poor and above the national target. Over 4 years, moderate intensification of insulin therapy (i.e. from two to three injections each day, usually reflecting splitting of the evening dose) across the population failed to improve the average HbA1c and reduce the increase seen with age. A national programme away from ,conventional' to an ,intensive' regimen of insulin therapy is required. [source]

    Diabetes service provision: a qualitative study of the experiences and views of Pakistani and Indian patients with Type 2 diabetes

    DIABETIC MEDICINE, Issue 9 2006
    J. Lawton
    Abstract Aims To explore Pakistani and Indian patients' experiences of, and views about, diabetes services in order to inform the development of culturally sensitive services. Design Qualitative, interview study involving 23 Pakistani and nine Indian patients with Type 2 diabetes recruited from general practices and the local community in Edinburgh, Scotland. Data collection and analysis occurred concurrently and recruitment continued until no new themes emerged from the interviews. Results Respondents expressed gratitude for the availability of free diabetes services in Britain, as they were used to having to pay to access health care on the Indian subcontinent. Most looked to services for the prompt detection and treatment of complications, rather than the provision of advice about managing their condition. As respondents attached importance to receiving physical examinations, they could be disappointed when these were not offered by health-care professionals. They disliked relying on interpreters and identified a need for bilingual professionals with whom they could discuss their diabetes care directly. Conclusions Gratitude for free services in Britain may instil a sense of indebtedness which makes it difficult for Pakistanis and Indians to be critical of their diabetes care. Health-care professionals may need to describe their roles carefully, and explain how different diabetes services fit together, to avoid Pakistani and Indian patients perceiving treatment as unsatisfactory. Whilst linkworker schemes may meet patients' need to receive culturally sensitive information in their first language, work is needed to assess their effectiveness and sustainability. [source]

    A national retinal screening programme for diabetes in Scotland

    DIABETIC MEDICINE, Issue 12 2003
    G. P. Leese
    Abstract The Health Technology Board Scotland (HTBS) have issued recommendations for eye screening in patients with diabetes. These are based on evidence-based clinical studies. Evidence-based studies do not answer all the practical issues, and some conclusions have thus been extrapolated from the known evidence base. Other factors such as patient issues, organizational issues and cost effectiveness have also been incorporated into the recommendations. HTBS recommend single-field digital retinal photography. Retinal photography best addresses the issues of adequate sensitivity and accountable quality assurance. Non-mydriatic photography is recommended, followed by immediate use of dilating eye drops if it is unsuccessful, followed by slit-lamp examination if both of these approaches fail. An independent grading scheme has been established, which is similar to the ,Global', and compatible with the National Screening Committee (NSC) grading scheme. The rationale for these recommendations, and debate behind some of the decisions, is laid out in this article. [source]

    An economic evaluation of atenolol vs. captopril in patients with Type 2 diabetes (UKPDS 54)

    DIABETIC MEDICINE, Issue 6 2001
    A. Gray
    Abstract Aims To compare the net cost of a tight blood pressure control policy with an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor (captopril) or , blocker (atenolol) in patients with Type 2 diabetes. Design A cost-effectiveness analysis based on outcomes and resources used in a randomized controlled trial and assumptions regarding the use of these therapies in a general practice setting. Setting Twenty United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study Hospital-based clinics in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Subjects Hypertensive patients (n= 758) with Type 2 diabetes (mean age 56 years, mean blood pressure 159/94 mmHg), 400 of whom were allocated to the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor captopril and 358 to the , blocker atenolol. Main outcome measures Life expectancy and mean cost per patient. Results There was no statistically significant difference in life expectancy between groups. The cost per patient over the trial period was £6485 in the captopril group, compared with £5550 in the atenolol group, an average cost difference of £935 (95% confidence interval £188, £1682). This 14% reduction arose partly because of lower drug prices, and also because of significantly fewer and shorter hospitalizations in the atenolol group, and despite higher antidiabetic drug costs in the atenolol group. Conclusions Treatment of hypertensive patients with Type 2 diabetes using atenolol or captopril was equally effective. However, total costs were significantly lower in the atenolol group. Diabet. Med. 18, 438,444 (2001) [source]

    Socio-economic status, obesity and prevalence of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus

    DIABETIC MEDICINE, Issue 6 2000
    J. M. M. Evans
    Summary Aims ,The influence of socio-economic status on the prevalence of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes mellitus, and on obesity, was explored using routinely collected healthcare data for the population of Tayside, Scotland. Methods ,Among 366 849 Tayside residents, 792 and 5474 patients with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes, respectively, were identified from a diabetes register. The Carstairs Score was used as a proxy for socio-economic status. This is a material deprivation measure derived from the UK census, using postcode data for four key variables. Odds ratios for diabetes prevalence, adjusted for age, were determined for each of six deprivation categories (1 , least deprived, 6/7 , most deprived). The mean body mass index (BMI) in each group was also determined, and the effect of deprivation category explored by analysis of covariance, adjusting for age and sex. Results ,The prevalence of Type 2 diabetes, but not Type 1 diabetes, varied by deprivation. People in deprivation category 6 and 7 were 1.6-times (95% confidence interval 1.4,1.8) more likely to have Type 2 diabetes than those least deprived. There was no relationship between deprivation and BMI in Type 1 diabetes (P = 0.36), but there was an increase in BMI with increasing deprivation in Type 2 diabetes (P < 0.001; test of linearity P < 0.001). Conclusions ,The study confirms the relationship between deprivation and the prevalence of Type 2 diabetes. There are more obese, diabetic patients in deprived areas. They require more targeted resources and more primary prevention. [source]

    Lithium monitoring before and after the distribution of clinical practice guidelines

    John M. Eagles
    Objective: To determine whether distribution of clinical practice guidelines improves lithium monitoring and whether standards of monitoring differed between patients in psychiatric contact and those seen only in primary care. Method: Standards of monitoring were assessed for patients on lithium in northeast Scotland throughout 1995 and/or throughout 1996. Guidelines were circulated in January 1996 to all local general practitioners and psychiatrists. Monitoring was compared between 1995 and 1996 and for patients with and without psychiatric contact. Results: Both primary care and psychiatric records were scrutinized for 422 and 403 patients prescribed lithium throughout 1995 and 1996, respectively. While monitoring was poor on several parameters during both years, frequency of measurement of both thyroid and renal function improved in 1996. Standards of monitoring were better for patients in psychiatric care. Conclusion: Standards of lithium monitoring require further improvement. Locally agreed practice guidelines are helpful but patients on lithium should be in continuing contact with an experienced psychiatrist. [source]

    The dentition of Goodrichthys, a Carboniferous ctenacanthiform shark from Scotland

    ACTA ZOOLOGICA, Issue 2009
    Michal Ginter
    Abstract Study of three sets of chondrichthyan teeth from the Mississippian (Viséan) of Glencartholm, Scotland, namely the dentition of the holotype of a ctenacanthiform shark Goodrichthys eskdalensis, the dentition of a recently found, yet undescribed shark (NMS 2000.14.2), and a group of isolated teeth probably found in a nodule, tentatively suggests that all of them represent the same species. The combined characters of these teeth show that the dentition of Goodrichthys was moderately heterodont, of a cladodont design, in which larger teeth may have had three, and smaller ones only two, lateral cusps on each side of a prominent, coarsely cristated median cusp. The base is similar to that of Cladodus and Famennian representatives of Ctenacanthus, with a prominent, undivided basolabial shelf and an almost straight orolingual ridge. [source]

    Heddleichthys, a new tristichopterid genus from the Dura Den Formation, Midland Valley, Scotland (Famennian, Late Devonian)

    ACTA ZOOLOGICA, Issue 2009
    Daniel Snitting
    Abstract A new tristichopterid genus, Heddleichthys, from the Famennian of Scotland is described based on material previously assigned to a number of different genera, including Glyptopomus, Gyroptychius and Eusthenopteron. The validity of the new genus is established by a discussion of the reasons for the invalidity of the previous assignments. Heddleichthys is characterized by a combination of derived and primitive tristichopterid features. Derived features include the presence of symphyseal dentary fangs and premaxillary pseudofangs, a diamond-shaped symmetric caudal fin, a low posterodorsal expansion of the maxilla, and a posteriorly positioned kite-shaped pineal series. Primitive features include a postorbital and jugal contribution to the orbital margin and a parasphenoid with a ventral keel. External dermal bones are rather poorly preserved in the referred material, with few easily discernible sutures. The holotype specimen, a three-dimensionally preserved skull, was scanned by computed tomography to reveal well-preserved internal dermal bones, including entopterygoids, vomers and parasphenoid. There is no preserved endoskeletal material. As the first representative of derived tristichopterids described from Britain, Heddleichthys lends support to the idea that faunal dispersion between Gondwana and Laurussia in the Late Devonian was widespread. Derived tristichopterids have been described from all continents except South America. In contrast, the basal tristichopterids Eusthenopteron and Tristichopterus are still only described from Laurussia. [source]

    Illicit tranquilliser use and dependence among female opiate users

    Abstract This study determined the predictors of 12-month dependence on illicit tranquillisers among female opiate users attending three services in Glasgow, Scotland, UK. Twelve-month drug dependence was measured using the Diagnostic Interview Schedule. The Revised Clinical Interview Schedule (CIS-R) measured current neurotic symptoms. 60% (159/266) had used illicit tranquillisers in the past 30 days, and 50% (132/266) met criteria for 12-month dependence on illicit tranquillisers. Polydrug use, injecting drug use, childhood and adulthood abuse, adverse life experiences and current and previous mental health problems were associated with 12-month dependence on illicit tranquillisers. Using multiple logistic regression, polydrug use in last 30 days (OR 3.2, 95% CI 1.5,7.0), history of deliberate self-harm (OR 2.5, 95% CI 1.4-4.4), history of injecting drug use (OR 2.5, 1.2,5.2) and likely to need treatment for current neurotic symptoms (CIS-R , 18) (OR 2.4, 95% CI 1.3,4.4) predicted 12-month dependence on illicit tranquillisers. Drug users in general and female drug users in particular who are using illicit tranquillisers are also particularly likely to have psychiatric symptoms requiring treatment. Mental health problems should be assessed and monitored among this client group and counselling and psychosocial support should be provided when indicated. [source]

    Peer overdose resuscitation: multiple intervention strategies and time to response by drug users who witness overdose

    Abstract One hundred and thirty-five drug users in contact with treatment services in Scotland and England were interviewed about their experiences of witnessing overdoses both overdoses resolved successfully and those leading to death and actions taken to effect resuscitation. One hundred and four (77%) had witnessed a mean of 11.5 overdoses, of whom 41 (30.4% of the study sample) had witnessed an average of 4.2 fatal overdoses. A wide range of actions was reported at the most recent witnessed overdose, the most common being slapping or shaking the victim (an average of 2.5 minutes after overdose was first recognised) or walking the person around the room (3.2 minutes after recognizing overdose). There was no consistent relationship between the time taken to acting and the number of actions taken. Successful resolution of last witnessed overdose was associated more strongly with immediate onset of overdose, while those that led to death were more often those that involved slow onset of overdose. There is clear evidence of the opportunity and willingness of witnesses to intervene, particularly when overdose onset is immediate, with a wide range of strategies adopted to encourage recovery, although these may often be inappropriate and wrongly prioritized. [source]

    Identification, assessment and intervention,implications of an audit on dyslexia policy and practice in Scotland

    DYSLEXIA, Issue 3 2005
    Gavin Reid
    Abstract This article reports on research commissioned by the Scottish Executive Education Department (SEED). It aimed to establish the range and extent of policy and provision in the area of specific learning difficulties (SpLD) and dyslexia throughout Scotland. The research was conducted between January and June 2004 by a team from the University of Edinburgh. The information was gathered from a questionnaire sent to all education authorities (100% response rate was achieved). Additional information was also obtained from supplementary interviews and additional materials provided by education authorities. The results indicated that nine education authorities in Scotland (out of 32) have explicit policies on dyslexia and eight authorities have policies on SpLD. It was noted however that most authorities catered for dyslexia and SpLD within a more generic policy framework covering aspects of Special Educational Needs or within documentation on ,effective learning'. In relation to identification thirty-six specific tests, or procedures, were mentioned. Classroom observation, as a procedure was rated high by most authorities. Eleven authorities operated a formal staged process combining identification and intervention. Generally, authorities supported a broader understanding of the role of identification and assessment and the use of standardized tests was only part of a wider assessment process. It was however noted that good practice in identification and intervention was not necessarily dependent on the existence of a dedicated policy on SpLD/dyslexia. Over fifty different intervention strategies/programmes were noted in the responses. Twenty-four authorities indicated that they had developed examples of good practice. The results have implications for teachers and parents as well as those involved in staff development. Pointers are provided for effective practice and the results reflect some of the issues on the current debate on dyslexia particularly relating to early identification. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    An examination of the relationship between dyslexia and offending in young people and the implications for the training system

    DYSLEXIA, Issue 2 2001
    Jane Kirk
    Abstract A screening study was undertaken which involved 50 young offenders, serving sentences of various lengths, all from the largest young offenders' institution in Scotland. All 50 were screened for dyslexia and a number received a more detailed follow-up assessment. The results of the screening showed that 25 of the young offenders (50%) were dyslexic to some degree. This finding has implications for professionals, particularly in respect of follow-up assessment and support, and for politicians in relation to issues such as school experience, prison education and staff training. These issues are discussed here in relation to the background and results of the study. Copyright © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Mental Health First Aid: an international programme for early intervention

    Betty A. Kitchener
    Abtract Aim: To describe the development of the Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) programme in Australia, its roll-out in other countries and evaluation studies which have been carried out. Methods: A description of the programme's development and evaluation, its cultural adaptations and its dissemination in seven countries. Results: The programme was developed in Australia in 2001. By the end of 2007, there were 600 instructors and 55 000 people trained as mental health first aiders. A number of evaluations have been carried out, including two randomized controlled trials that showed changes in knowledge, attitudes and first aid behaviours. Special adaptations of the course have been rolled out for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and some non-English speaking immigrant groups. The course has spread to seven other countries with varying degrees of penetration. In all countries, the programme has been initially supported by government funding. Independent evaluations have been carried out in Scotland and Ireland. Conclusions: The concept of first aid by the public for physical health crises is familiar in many countries. This has made it relatively easy to extend this approach to early intervention by members of the public for mental disorders and crises. Through MHFA training, the whole of a community can assist formal mental health services in early intervention for mental disorders. [source]

    St Columba and the convention at Druimm Cete: peace and politics at seventh-century Iona

    James E. Fraser
    Attendance at the ,convention of kings' at Druimm Cete in north-east Ireland is one of the most famous episodes in the career of St Columba or Colum Cille, who died in 597. Discussion of the significance of this shadowy summit, largely informed by unreliable late evidence, has hitherto focused upon what (may have) transpired there between kings based in Ireland and Scotland. The result has been the neglect of the hagiographical dimension of the presentation of Druimm Cete in our principal source, Adomnán's Vita Sancti Columbae, composed c.700. Analysis of this material shows that Adomnán's information about the convention came from his principal source, composed some sixty years earlier. It reveals moreover that Druimm Cete assumed prominence within the Columban dossier in the 640s for what it represented, rather than because of what actually happened there. Once the hagiographical agenda of Vita Sancti Columbae and its principal source is restored to its rightful place in evaluating the text, it emerges that several of its best-known stories , including the story of Columba's ordination of a Scottish king , are much more problematic as witnesses to sixth-century history than is conventionally supposed. As scholars begin to lose their grip upon the historical Columba, however, they grow better able to grasp seventh-century political history in north-east Ireland and Gaelic Scotland. [source]

    Accounting for uncertainty in DEMs from repeat topographic surveys: improved sediment budgets

    Joseph M. Wheaton
    Abstract Repeat topographic surveys are increasingly becoming more affordable, and possible at higher spatial resolutions and over greater spatial extents. Digital elevation models (DEMs) built from such surveys can be used to produce DEM of Difference (DoD) maps and estimate the net change in storage terms for morphological sediment budgets. While these products are extremely useful for monitoring and geomorphic interpretation, data and model uncertainties render them prone to misinterpretation. Two new methods are presented, which allow for more robust and spatially variable estimation of DEM uncertainties and propagate these forward to evaluate the consequences for estimates of geomorphic change. The first relies on a fuzzy inference system to estimate the spatial variability of elevation uncertainty in individual DEMs while the second approach modifies this estimate on the basis of the spatial coherence of erosion and deposition units. Both techniques allow for probabilistic representation of uncertainty on a cell-by-cell basis and thresholding of the sediment budget at a user-specified confidence interval. The application of these new techniques is illustrated with 5 years of high resolution survey data from a 1,km long braided reach of the River Feshie in the Highlands of Scotland. The reach was found to be consistently degradational, with between 570 and 1970,m3 of net erosion per annum, despite the fact that spatially, deposition covered more surface area than erosion. In the two wetter periods with extensive braid-plain inundation, the uncertainty analysis thresholded at a 95% confidence interval resulted in a larger percentage (57% for 2004,2005 and 59% for 2006,2007) of volumetric change being excluded from the budget than the drier years (24% for 2003,2004 and 31% for 2005,2006). For these data, the new uncertainty analysis is generally more conservative volumetrically than a standard spatially-uniform minimum level of detection analysis, but also produces more plausible and physically meaningful results. The tools are packaged in a wizard-driven Matlab software application available for download with this paper, and can be calibrated and extended for application to any topographic point cloud (x,y,z). Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    A model of equilibrium bed topography for meander bends with erodible banks

    Stephen E. Darby
    Abstract Channel curvature produces secondary currents and a transverse sloping channel bed, along which the depth increases towards the outer bank. As a result deep pools tend to form adjacent to the outer bank, promoting bank collapse. The interaction of sediment grains with the primary and secondary flow and the transverse sloping bed also causes meanders to move different grain sizes in different proportions and directions, resulting in a consistent sorting pattern. Several models have been developed to describe this process, but they all have the potential to over-predict pool depth because they cannot account for the influence of erodible banks. In reality, bank collapse might lead to the development of a wider, shallower cross-section and any resulting flow depth discrepancy can bias associated predictions of flow, sediment transport, and grain-size sorting. While bed topography, sediment transport and grain sorting in bends will partly be controlled by the sedimentary characteristics of the bank materials, the magnitude of this effect has not previously been explored. This paper reports the development of a model of flow, sediment transport, grain-size sorting, and bed topography for river bends with erodible banks. The model is tested via intercomparison of predicted and observed bed topography in one low-energy (5·3 W m,2 specific stream power) and one high-energy (43·4 W m,2) study reach, namely the River South Esk in Scotland and Goodwin Creek in Mississippi, respectively. Model predictions of bed topography are found to be satisfactory, at least close to the apices of bends. Finally, the model is used in sensitivity analyses that provide insight into the influence of bank erodibility on equilibrium meander morphology and associated patterns of grain-size sorting. The sensitivity of meander response to bank cohesion is found to increase as a function of the available stream power within the two study bends. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. [source]

    Ground beetle species (Coleoptera, Carabidae) associations with land cover variables in northern England and southern Scotland

    ECOGRAPHY, Issue 4 2004
    M. D. Eyre
    Distribution data concerning 172 ground beetle species derived from 1145 pitfall trap sites in northern England and southern Scotland were used to assess the relationship between species distribution and 12 satellite-derived land cover variables at the regional scale. A number of species were strongly associated with one cover type and negatively with others. The major variation was for preferences for covers in upland or lowland parts of the region. Other distinct preferences for some species were covers such as those at the coast whilst a number of common species showed no strong preference for any cover variable. The synthesis of ground beetle species distribution and satellite-derived cover data is discussed in relation to environmental assessment and change. [source]

    Temperature and hen harrier productivity: from local mechanisms to geographical patterns

    ECOGRAPHY, Issue 5 2002
    S. M. Redpath
    Climate is an important factor limiting demography and distribution patterns in many organisms. For species with a broad geographical distribution, the mechanism by which climate influences demography is likely to vary dramatically from one end of the range to the other. In this paper we first assess, in a Scottish population of hen harriers Circus cyaneus, how temperature and rainfall influence adult behaviour and chick mortality patterns at the nest. We then test for associations between harrier productivity and weather across Scotland, towards the northern edge of the range, and Spain, towards the southern edge of the range. We show that during the nestling period, female brooding time increased in cold weather. Male provisioning rate was negatively related to temperature and rainfall. Chick mortality increased in cold temperatures and was most likely to occur at nests where male prey delivery rates were low relative to temperature. Annual values of harrier fledged brood size across Scotland were positively related to summer temperature suggesting that the patterns seen in one population held at a national scale. In Spain, however, the opposite patterns were observed with fledged brood size being negatively related to temperature. This shows that whilst the impact of weather on productivity may be equally strong at two ends of a geographical range, the mechanisms vary dramatically. Large-scale predictive models need to take such patterns into account. [source]

    Topographic spatial characterisation of grey seal Halichoerus grypus breeding habitat at a sub-seal size spatial grain

    ECOGRAPHY, Issue 3 2001
    S. D. Twiss
    Expansion within breeding colonies may critically depend upon the availability of suitable breeding habitat. Here we use topographic modelling in a GIS to characterise suitable pupping habitat and accurately predict the pattern of colonisation in an expanding grey seal breeding colony-the Isle of May (Scotland), We use high resolution images from large format aerial photographs of the colony to generate sub-metre accurate Digital Terrain Models (DTMs), GIS modelling with these DTMs provides topographic measures of elevation, slope and ease of access to sea and freshwater pools at a 2 m grid cell size. Seal locations during the 1994 breeding season, with sex-age class, were also digitised from the same images. We examine how the physical attributes of cells (locations) with and without pups differ and identify areas suitable for pupping but remaining unoccupied during 1994. We predict patterns of future colonisation by characterising areas differentiated by the densities of pups within 5 m grid cells and identifying areas, both occupied or unoccupied, with a potential for increased future pupping densities. Our predictions were tested by examining pup distributions observed in the 1998 breeding season. Occupied sites were significantly closer to freshwater pools and access to the sea (p < 0.001) than unoccupied sites suggesting that proximity to water may restrict colony expansion before all areas of suitably flat terrain are occupied. All pup density classes occurred in sites with similar slope values and distance to pools. However, higher pupping densities occurred closer to access points (p = 0.014). Pup densities observed in 1998 revealed that our 1994 predictions were accurate (p < 0.0001). Only 12% of 466 grid cells had higher densities in 1998 than predicted, of which 88% differed by only 1 pup. These incorrectly classified cells occurred at the expanding edge of the colony (in a more topographically homogenous area) and at the main access points from the sea (major traffic zones). These results demonstrate the value of the accurate quantification of topographic parameters at the appropriate spatial grain (in this case below the size of the individual) for use in habitat classification and predictions of habitat utilization. [source]

    Australia's place in the global restoration challenge: Interview with Richard Hobbs

    Richard Hobbs
    Summary This interview with Professor Richard Hobbs, a prominent Australian researcher, professor and journal editor, traces his involvement in ecology and the relatively new disciplines of landscape ecology and restoration ecology. Born and educated as a plant ecologist in Scotland, Richard undertook postdoctoral research in the USA before taking up a series of research positions in Australia that steered him towards landscape ecology and restoration ecology. Having maintained an interest and involvement in international organizations, Richard provides comment in this interview on the progress of ecological restoration practice in Australasia compared to North America and comments on the need for ensuring research in these disciplines is strongly linked to management, is as broadly relevant as possible, and, is carried out at appropriate scales. [source]

    Foraging specialisms, prey size and life-history patterns: a test of predictions using sympatric polymorphic Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus)

    D. Fraser
    Abstract,,, We use arguments based on optimal foraging theory to predict body size constraints and the consequences of these on a range of life-history traits in three trophic specialist morphs of Arctic charr, Salvelinus alpinus, living in sympatry in Loch Rannoch, Scotland. As predicted, foraging specialists feeding on small prey items with a narrow size range showed evidence of deterministic growth; the ultimate body size of macrobenthos feeders being larger (L, = 238 mm) than that of planktivores (L, = 216 mm). In contrast, the piscivorous morph showed no evidence of reaching a maximal body size. The two size-constrained morphs (benthivores and planktivores) matured earlier and died younger (living for up to 11 and 7 years, respectively, in this study) than did the piscivorous charr which showed continuous growth up to at least 17 years. The pattern of annual reproductive investment in maturing individuals was complex. Planktivores invested in larger eggs than the other two forms, but benthivores produced a greater number of eggs than planktivores, which in turn produced more than piscivores. Planktivorous males had a greater investment in mean testis weight than the other two forms. Lifetime reproductive output was the greatest in the benthivorous charr, intermediate in planktivorous and the lowest in the piscivorous charr when measured either as fecundity or as gonadal weight. We conclude that constraints imposed upon foraging specialists by foraging efficiency is a significant driver of body size and ultimately reproductive investment in gape-limited foraging salmonids. [source]

    Conservation and management of the Arctic charr: a forward view

    C. E. Adams
    Abstract , In this study, we synthesised the views of 34 participants in a workshop to consider the status and future conservation and management of the Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus L.). These are expressed as a series of resolutions deriving from a conference on Arctic charr conservation held in Perth, Scotland in June 2004. Agreed resolutions from the conference were as follows. (i) The unique diversity of Arctic charr should be recognised for the contribution it makes to biodiversity of northern aquatic communities. (ii) The recognition by the public, nongovernmental organisations and national governments of the importance of Arctic charr in northern ecosystems is an important step to the management and protection that should be pursued. (iii) The taxonomic status of highly variable charr populations requires to be reviewed. (iv) There should be a separate system, complementary to the taxonomic one, which systematically catalogues the biological diversity of S. alpinus. (v) The Arctic charr provides a unique natural resource to study the process of evolution and this requires the highest level of protection from anthropogenic effects. (vi) The status of conservation policy for Arctic charr needs to be urgently reviewed to take account of its unique position in the fauna. [source]

    Patterns of phenotypic and genetic variability show hidden diversity in Scottish Arctic charr

    C. E. Adams
    Abstract,,, This study examined the degree and pattern of variability in trophic morphology in Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus L.) at three spatial scales: across 22 populations from Scotland and between and within two adjacent catchments (Laxford and Shin) in northern Scotland. In addition, the variability at six microsatellite loci between and within the Laxford and Shin systems was determined. Habitat use by charr differed significantly between populations. The pattern of variability in trophic morphology, known to influence foraging ability in charr, showed a very high degree of between-population variation with at least 52% of population pairs showing significant differences in head shape. Trophic morphology and genetic variation was also high over small geographical scales; variation being as high between charr from lakes within the same catchment, as between adjacent catchments. The pattern of both phenotypic and genotypic variation suggests a mosaic of variation across populations with geographically close populations often as distinct from each other as populations with much greater separation. Very low levels of effective migrants between populations, even within the same catchment, suggest that this variation is being maintained by very low straying rates between phenotypically and genetically distinct populations, even when there is no apparent barrier to movement. We conclude that the genetic and phenotypic integrity of charr populations across Scotland is high and that this adaptive radiation constitutes a ,hidden' element of diversity in northern freshwater systems. Two consequences of this are that the population (rather than the species) makes a more rational unit for the consideration of conservation strategies and that the habitat requirements and therefore management needs may differ significantly between populations. [source]