The dataset details surface sediment water content across six intertidal sites in the winter and summer of 2013. Three of the sites were in Morecambe Bay, North West England and three of the sites were in Essex, South East England. Each of these sites consisted of a saltmarsh area and adjacent mudflat area, with twenty two sampling quadrats placed on each area. Five replicate sediment samples were taken at each quadrat and then freeze dried to give average percentage water content.
This data was collected as part of Coastal Biodiversity and Ecosystem Service Sustainability (CBESS): NE/J015644/1. The project was funded with support from the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Service Sustainability (BESS) programme. BESS is a six-year programme (2011-2017) funded by the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) as part of the UK's Living with Environmental Change (LWEC) programme.
Publication date: 2015-12-11
Sediment water content was determined through the collection of contact cores. Contact cores use liquid nitrogen to freeze the top 2mm of the sediment surface, excess unfrozen sediment is removed and the sample core is stored below -80 degree centigrade. The sample is weighed to determine wet weight and freeze dried to remove all water. The sample is re-weighed to give dry weight; the difference between the wet and dry weights gives the water content as a percentage. The location of the sample sites was determined by randomly allocated quadrats. Twenty two 1 x 1 m quadrats were randomly allocated to each mudflat and saltmarsh site using R (R Development Core Team, 2014) to specify four different spatial scales (A = 1 quadrat only, B = 3 quadrats at 1 m to 10 m apart, C = 6 quadrats at 10 m to 100 m apart, D = 12 quadrats at 100 m to 1000 m or site maximum).