The importance and vulnerability of our small
Mary Kelly-Quinn, UCD. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Almost 77% of the river network in Ireland comprises first and second order streams
Represented by just over 10% of sites in the EPA
See: McGarrigle, M. (2014) Assessment of small water bodies in Ireland. Biology and Environment: Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 114B, 119-128. Special Issue on Small Water Bodies.
Why consider small streams? Small stream capture considerable volume of water Influence water quality in downstream reaches Spawning and nursery area for salmonids
Important in terms of catchment biodiversity. Up to 29% of aquatic macroinvertebrate species are unique to headwaters function of stream heterogeneity
Support species common to further downstream
Number of taxa unique (blue)to each distance and common to various distances (Rivers Bilboa, Mulkear & Tar)
For more detail see: Callanan, M., Baars, J-R. & Kelly-Quinn, M. (2014) Macroinvertebrates of Irish headwater streams: contribution of catchment biodiversity. Biology and Environment: Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 114B, 143-162. Special Issue on Small Water Bodies
Some headwater areas are species-rich & may in the future be extremely important sink populations.
From: Feeley, H.B. & Kelly-Quinn, M. (2012) An evaluation of local and regional diversity of benthic macroinvertebrate communities in two small regions of Ireland and their potential refugia for certain taxonomic groups. Biology and Environment: Proceedings of the Royal Irish Academy 112B, 1, 43-54.
Stressors on small streams Particularly vulnerable to pollution Narrow channel high land-water interface Low dilution capacity
Point & diffuse pollution Chronic & acute Multiple pressures
April 10May 10June 10 July 10 Oct 10 Feb 11 May 11 July 12
Gortinlieve Catchment, Donegal Data from: Pathways Project 0.0
April 10 May 10 June 10 July 10 Oct 10 Feb 11 May 11 July 12
Spring Summer Autumn Winter Spring
GoodModeratePoor Glen Burn Stream Pathways Project
Nutrient & Sediment Inputs
River Ow, Wicklow From: Hydrofor Report (J. Clarke)
Sites in west of Ireland Hydrofor Project See: Feeley, H.B., Bruen, M., Blacklocke, S. Baars & Kelly-Quinn, M. (2013) Science of the Total Environment 443, 173-183.
) 24th Oct. 2011
See: Feeley, H.B., Davis, Stephen, Bruen, M. Blacklocke, M. & Kelly-Quinn, M. (2012) Journal of Limnology, 71, 2, 309-318.
Editors: M. Kelly-Quinn & J-R Baars Thanks to EPA for sponsorship
Available online December 10th
Increase awareness Boots on the ground Target research to address
Extent of Small Streams Risk Score monitoring in support of Characterisation and development of the WFD monitoring programme during 20052006.
Slide Number 1Slide Number 2Why consider small streams?Slide Number 4Slide Number 5Stressors on small streamsLowland streamsUpland streamsSlide Number 9Action needed