Kate Walker

Kate Walker's picture

Staff Profiles

e-mail address
First Name
Cardiff University
Current Position
Role at Tyndall

PhD Researcher

Research Themes


PhD Researchers Profile

Tyndall Research Theme
Water and Landuse
Duration of your PhD
Thesis's Supervisor
Lorraine Whitmarsh
My Thesis' Abstract

Public Perception of Habitat Management Strategies for the Freshwater Pearl Mussel in Response to Climate-driven Environmental Change
My research, which is composed of two parts, surrounds the iconic British bivalve mollusc and the freshwater pearl mussel (Margaratifera margaratifera) which is now protected due to declines in numbers caused by changes to water quality and over harvesting. A major source of river pollution is soil as a result of erosion processes often exacerbated by poor land management decisions. Climate change is likely to significantly affect these processes, although currently little is known about how this will vary under different climate change scenarios. It is anticipated that any successful method to control future sediment movement into rivers will be achieved by a combination of understanding the processes behind future erosion rates and obtaining public understanding and support for any mitigation measures. Thus a two-stranded approach is being used to investigate this issue. First, the Pan European Soil Erosion Risk Assessment (PESERA) model has been used to predict future erosion rates for three river catchments across the United Kingdom, known for their freshwater pearl mussel populations, under three climate change scenarios, and identify how these may be ameliorated by land use choices. The second stage of the research therefore involves investigating public perceptions of rivers through a series of focus groups and questionnaires. The aim is to assess riverscape preferences, views on possible mitigation measures to control soil movement into rivers for the conservation of freshwater pearl mussels and an evaluation of risks to rivers associated with climate change. The aim of this research is to engage the public in decision making process of catchment management to better allow the UK to meet its’ statutory requirements under legislation such as the EU’s Water Framework Directive and Habitats Directive.


Member for
4 years 44 weeks
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