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Providing evidence to improve practice

Individual study: Vegetation changes following the rewetting of a vegetated cutover peatland surface at Danes Moss, Cheshire, England

Published source details

Meade R. (1992) Some early changes following the rewetting of a vegetated cutover peatland surface at Danes Moss, Cheshire, UK, and their relevance to conservation management. Biological Conservation, 61, 31-40


This study is summarised as evidence for the intervention(s) shown on the right. The icon shows which synopsis it is relevant to.

Divert/replace polluted water source(s) Peatland Conservation

A before-and-after study in 1972–1987 in a historically mined raised bog in England, UK (Meade 1992) reported that after diversion of polluted inflow (along with rewetting), cover of Sphagnum moss, white sedge Carex curta and cottongrasses Eriophorum spp. increased, but cover of purple moor grass Molinia caerulea decreased. No statistical tests were carried out. Sphagnum was found in 7% of quadrats before intervention but 27% after, white sedge in 0.0% before but 0.8% after, and cottongrasses in 1.1% before and 1.5–1.7% after. In contrast, purple moor grass Molinia caerulea occurred in 100% of quadrats before intervention but only 74% after. Eighteen other herb, shrub and tree species showed variable responses (see original paper). In 1974, polluted inflow from adjacent farms was diverted away from a bog, whilst the water outflow was blocked to raise the water table. The study does not distinguish between the effects of these interventions. Vegetation cover was recorded before (1972–1973) and after (1987) intervention, as presence/absence of species in 8,945 contiguous 4 m2 quadrats covering the whole site.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)

Rewet peatland (raise water table) Peatland Conservation

A before-and-after study in 1972–1987 in a historically mined raised bog in England, UK (Meade 1992) reported that after rewetting (and diversion of polluted inflow), cover of Sphagnum moss, white sedge Carex curta and cottongrasses Eriophorum spp. increased, but cover of purple moor grass Molinia caerulea decreased. No statistical tests were carried out. Sphagnum was found in 7% of quadrats before intervention but 27% after, white sedge in 0.0% before but 0.8% after, and cottongrasses in 1.1% before but 1.5–1.7% after. In contrast, purple moor grass occurred in 100% of quadrats before intervention but only 74% after. Eighteen other herb, shrub and tree species showed variable responses (see original paper). In 1974, a drained bog was rewetted (surface partially waterlogged) by blocking its water outflow. At the same time, polluted inflow from adjacent farms was diverted off site. The study does not distinguish between the effects of these interventions. Vegetation cover was recorded before (1972–1973) and after (1987) intervention, as presence/absence of species in 8,945 contiguous 4 m2 quadrats covering the whole site.

(Summarised by Nigel Taylor)