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Title: Organisation, landowner and farmer management in the conservation of blanket mires
Author: O'Brien, Elizabeth
ISNI:       0000 0001 3451 311X
Awarding Body: University of Central Lancashire
Current Institution: University of Central Lancashire
Date of Award: 2000
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Despite being Britain's most extensive semi-natural habitat, less research has been carried out on blanket mires than on many other habitats. This is possibly a result of their relative inaccessibility, since they are mainly confined to upland areas in England and Wales and remoter parts of Scotland; also to their apparent abundance, given that they cover significant portions of the landscape. Blanket mires in Britain cover approximately 1.5-2 million hectares; studies have documented substantial losses and up to ninety percent of blanket mires in Britain have been adversely affected. Literature on blanket mires suggests that poor management is one of the key issues for this habitat together with a lack of financial resources and commitment by the Government to protect and conserve sites adequately. The range of land uses of blanket mires is complex and includes agriculture, conservation, recreation, water catchment, grouse and deer management and forestry. These various uses have led to conflict among certain groups and a number of uses have had a detrimental effect on this habitat. Often the value of blanket mires has been overlooked even though this habitat, as part of natural ecosystem process, can provide functions and services such as wildlife interest and hydrological supply systems. A gap has been identified in the current literature on blanket mires, which suggests that research into the broader issues of strategy and management of this habitat, by organisations, landowners and farmers, has not been undertaken. Interview data have been obtained from organisations, landowners and farmers involved with blanket mire management and assessed by interpretational analysis. The research has been carried out both at a national level in Britain and at a local level with a case study of the Forest of Bowland in Lancashire. The local case study has been related to the wider context of blanket mire management and conservation. A total of fifty four in-depth interviews were undertaken in order to gain information on the views, perspectives and experiences of those involved with blanket mire management. How blanket mires are valued has a significant impact on how peatlands are conserved and for what reason. This research reveals that, in order to be effective, organisations will have to have a clear vision of what end point they are working towards and devise practical sategies that are flexible enough to incorporate the distinctiveness of different blanket mire areas.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Y - Combined/general subject unspecified