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Title: Ponds, people and the built environment : a socio-ecological perspective
Author: Gledhill, David G.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2699 8155
Awarding Body: University of Salford
Current Institution: University of Salford
Date of Award: 2010
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Blue / green spaces within urban areas offer a variety of services to human populations as well as habitats for other species. Ponds, despite their designation as nationally important habitats in the UK, are among the least well studied urban habitats. Urban planning policy in the UK is moving towards increasing urban density rather than urban expansion. While compact cities offer benefits in terms of resource utilisation and transportation, they also place increased pressure on blue/green spaces. Ponds offer an ideal microcosm for exploring issues of urban ecology within differing urban settings. Data were collected from thirty seven ponds (a 10% random sample) in the urban area of Halton, northwest England over a three year period (2005 - 2007). A range of complimentary methods were employed to analyses the impact of ecological, chemical and physical parameters, landscape structure and socio-economic factors on pond ecology within both traditional urban centres and a designated New Town development. These data were compared to data, collected in 2006, from fifty one ponds in the adjacent rural landscape of Cheshire. This allowed analysis of variations in pond ecology along an urbanisation gradient. While the species richness of ponds within Halton was comparable with national indicators, they were significantly lower than their rural neighbours in Cheshire. Data also showed that increasing urban density, in already urbanised areas, has less impact on species richness than urban expansion into more rural locations. The most significant impact on pond species numbers was the density of ponds within the surrounding landscape. This research offers insights into the impact of urban development on pond ecology, and suggests the potential impact of future developments and how this may be ameliorated.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available