Day 2 – Sat 2nd Aug – on the bog
We began after a hearty breakfast, to look at some of the natural bog forests (called “Ryam”). These were quite wet to walk on (after all the rain) and the tree heights were quite variable. We were mainly in the sections with smaller trees (still well above your head ~ 3m) which consisted of Scots Pine and Siberian Pine. We walked down a track and left the PEATEDGE guys to choose their sites, while we went looking at the open bog.
We did a lot of walking about in the wet and were later rewarded by the boardwalk, through the main area of open bog. This is a wooden path built above the bog, to allow safe passage of the really wet areas and prevent trampling. After the difficult walking it was very welcoming to find the boardwalk. The open bog section comprised large open areas of Sphagnum lawns and ryam islands (large hummocks with ericaceous shrubs and trees), which were spread throughout and ranged in size from a few square meters to hundreds of square meters. These lawn and ryam areas are really something special to see, with beautiful colours.
Here we were choosing sites to deploy out passive samplers to measure Biogenic Volatile Organic Compounds (BVOCs), and later collect samples to measure dissolved organic carbon (DOC) along with various supporting measurements. We deployed our BVOC samplers in open bog lawns, and ryams both in the shrub canopy and tree canopy as well as in the continuous bog forest, to look for differences influenced by vegetation type.
In the evening we had a buckwheat dinner, quite late after a lot of fieldwork and we then were told the sauna was ready!! The ladies went first and then the gents, when I got in it was 88 °C. After a bit of heat, there was really cold water from the well to rinse in! I was so happy to have a wash after the travelling and a long day of fieldwork! After that a really, a really good sleep!
Day 3 – Sunday 3rd Aug – A full fieldwork day
This morning breakfast was hot pasta with milk and was surprisingly good! Me and Roxane then went out with Joss, Richard and Elena to do some work on the PEATEDGE project. I was working with Joss measuring tree trunk diameters, which was surprisingly tiring in the Siberian sun. We worked at this across two different transects and also measured peat temperature at different depths and surface moisture.
In the afternoon I was working with Mark and Roxane (back to the DAVOCCAP) work, drawing sketches of our sample sites, while Mark was taking vegetation samples and Roxane doing quadrat surveys. During our adventures we saw a dragonfly being capture by a carnivorous bog plant [Drosera anglica]. We had a brilliant stew for dinner with lamb or beef – kind of Sunday dinner like and then another sauna to finish (men first this time)!!