Suspended organic matter stocks of Welsh upland rivers in response to organic matter addition (2012 - 2013)

These data are suspended organic matter stocks of coarse and fine particulate organic matter in eight Welsh upland rivers with contrasting land-use, moorland and exotic conifer, in response to riparian deciduous leaf addition. Eight sampling reaches were chosen at two sites, Llyn Brianne (4 reaches) and Plynlimon (4 reaches). The experiment consisted of adding deciduous leaves to half of the reaches whilst the other half were maintained as a control (no addition of deciduous leaves). To characterise the suspended organic matter of the studied streams, water was filtered to collect monthly samples during from December 2012 and January 2013 (before deciduous leaf addition) and from February to April 2013 (after deciduous leaf addition) in each sampling reach.

The main goal of this survey was to examine how aquatic biodiversity and organic matter stocks respond to leaf addition in moorland and conifer forested rivers. Dr Isabelle Durance was responsible for organising the surveys, Marian Pye was in charge of collecting, processing and sorting the samples. The work was carried out under Diversity in Upland Rivers for Ecosystem Service Sustainability (DURESS) project (Grant reference NERC NE/J014818/1). DURESS was a project funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) Biodiversity and Ecosystem Service Sustainability (BESS) programme.

Publication date: 2017-04-20


Study area


Each stream was divided into an upstream control zone and a downstream experimental zone. Samples of suspended organic matter were collected by filtering water. Deciduous leaves were added directly to the stream and by fixing 'Onion bags' of leaves the stream bed and bank. Samples were collected on six occasions, December (3-10/12/2012) January (3-16/01/2013), February (4-7/02/2013), March (11-14/03/2013), April (3-8/04/2013) and May (22-26/05/2013) in all the streams in both the upstream reference zones and downstream experimental zones. Upon collection,Suspended Organic Matter (SOM) samples were refrigerated at 4 degrees celsius, returned to the laboratory and frozen within 24 hours. Frozen SOM samples were then freeze-dried at -20 degrees Celsius for 48 to 72 hours and weighed to the nearest 0.0001gramme. Freeze-dried SOM samples were ground, homogenised and subsampled (3mg ±0.3mg) for analysis of elemental (C, N) and stable isotopic (delta-13C, delta-15N) composition on a mass spectrometer (University of California Davis Stable Isotope Facility). All SOM samples were corrected for inorganic content by combusting a subset (%) of samples from each site at 550 degrees Celsius for 5 hours and applying an ash-free conversion factor. Results were recorded in an Excel spreadsheet. Data was exported to a comma separated value files for ingestion into the Environmental Information Data Centre (EIDC).


Durance, I.
Cardiff University
Gutierrez-Canovas, C.
Cardiff University
Pye, M.C.
Cardiff University
Ormerod, S.J.
Cardiff University

Other contacts

Environmental Information Data Centre
NERC Environmental Information Data Centre
Principal Investigator
Durance, I.
Cardiff University
Point Of Contact
Durance, I.
Cardiff University
Sir Martin Evans Building, Museum Avenue
CF10 3AX
United Kingdom
Environmental Information Data Centre


Spatial representation type
Tabular (text)
Spatial reference system
OSGB 1936 / British National Grid


Topic categories
Discipline keywords
ecosystem services
suspended organic matter
Environmental Monitoring Facilities
Place keywords
Llyn Brianne
Project keywords

Dataset identifiers


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Environmental Information Data Centre
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