The Talla Water drains the western slopes of Broad Law, the highest peak in Scotland’s Southern Uplands. Having been harnessed for Edinburgh’s public water supply since 1905, it is easy to understand this is one of the wettest river catchments in southern Scotland.
The University of Dundee is involved in monitoring at Talla for a range of interlinked research purposes:
- Groundwater-surface water interaction in the context of changing climate and soils – led by the British Geological Survey
- Assessing the effects of wind speed and gauge design on rainfall measurements – led by Newcastle University and Environmental Measurements Ltd (Michael Pollock PhD/KTP study)
- Long-term hydrological change arising from a major change in land management – in 2014 the Talla & Ganeshope estate, covering the upper Talla catchment, was bought by the Borders Forest Trust, and 200 years of sheep grazing was brought to an end in order to begin a programme of rejuvenation of the native flora and fauna. Long-term research opportunities revolve around changes now beginning in the ecology, water chemistry and catchment runoff behavior.