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Crane fly modelling

This work is based on a PhD thesis sucessfull defended by Matthew Carroll (2011) who did his PhD work at York as part of a CASE PhD with the RSPB (supervisors were Chris Thomas at York and James Pierce-Higgins at RSPB).

During his PhD the MILLENNIA model (Heinemeyer et al., 2010) was updated to allow a monthly time step; water table outputs form the model were compared to three UK blanket bog sites and used to predict soil moisture across large catchments for those four upland areas (Wales; Peak District; North York Moors) and the model was also validated against water table data for Moor House (NNR; UK). The model performed well for all sites (compared to site water table and peat depth measurements; see (1)) but required to consider peat development period (i.e. time since peat initiation). This varied between sites and peat initiation times were based on data by Tallis (REF). The model code also allows to consider topographic effects (i.e. aspect and slope) on temperature (and thus evaporation and decomposition processes) as well as erosion through runoff.

The predicted soil moisture predictions were based on a relationship between observed soil moisture and predicted water tables (2) and used to predict crane fly emergence the followig year based on field relationships with soil moisture (3). Based on those contemporary relationships we extrapolated across the landscape and into the future (4) using climate change scenarios for the UK (UKCIP). We kindly acknowlegde the use of UK ECN data for Moor House (water table depths and climate data to enable model validation).

The above images were taken from a talk given by A. Heinemeyer at the BES conference in Bangor 2012: "Modelling past, present and future UK upland peatland carbon dynamics and implications for restoration projects"