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Dr Meg Pollock

Research Interests

My research interests are the impact of herbivores on upland vegetation and the interaction between farming systems and upland landscapes.

My current work includes:

  • Methods for estimating cattle activity and subsequent impacts on biodiversity in upland grazing systems
  • Assessing evidence of conflicts between designated upland vegetation types in terms of their grazing requirements

My previous work includes:

  • The impacts of reduced sheep grazing on upland biodiversity - Sheep numbers in the uplands have declined rapidly, as a result of CAP reform and sheep economics. The work involved participatory research with stakeholders and biodiversity experts, to select appropriate indicator variables which were measured at numerous paired study sites
  • Involvement with a pilot woodland grazing trial funded by Forestry Commission Scotland and contribution to the Woodland Grazing Toolbox
  • Initiation of a project funded by SNH to provide guidance for sites where habitats have conflicting grazing requirements: Developing guidance for managing extensive upland grazing where habitats have differing requirements (SNH Report)

Research Projects

  • RERAD Workpackage 3.2

Selected Publications

  • Pollock, M.L., Holland, J.P., Morgan-Davies, C., Morgan-Davies, J., & Waterhouse, A. (2013). Reduced sheep grazing and biodiversity: a novel approach to selecting and measuring biodiversity indicators. Rangeland Ecology & Management, 66, 387-400. Abstract
  • Holland, J.P., Waterhouse, A., Robertson, D., & Pollock, M. L. (2008) Effect of different grazing management systems on the herbage mass and pasture height of a Nardus stricta grassland in western Scotland, United Kingdom. Grass and Forage Science 63, 48-59. Full Text
  • Morgan-Davies, C., Waterhouse, A., Pollock, ML and Milner JM. (2008) Body condition score as an indicator of ewe survival under extensive conditions. Animal Welfare, 17, 71-77
  • Pollock, M.L., Legg, C.J., Holland, J.P., & Theobald, C.M. (2007) Assessment of expert opinion: Seasonal sheep preference and plant response to grazing. Rangeland Ecology & Management 60, 125-135 Full Text
  • Pollock, M.L., Lee, W.G., Walker, S., & Forrester, G. (2007) Ratite and ungulate preferences for woody New Zealand plants: influence of chemical and physical traits. New Zealand Journal of Ecology 31, 68-78 Full Text
  • Cole, L.J., Pollock, M.L.,Robertson, D., Holland J.P. & McCracken, D.I. 2006. Carabid assemblages in the Scottish uplands: the influence of sheep grazing on ecological structure. Entomologica Fennica 17 229-240. Full Text
  • Morgan-Davies,C., Waterhouse, T., Pollock, M.L., & Smyth, K. (2005) Local area farming plans - A common reality for farmers and conservationists in the Scottish Highlands? Scottish Geographical Journal 121, 385-400 Full Text
  • Pollock, M.L., Milner, J.M., Waterhouse, A., Holland, J.P., & Legg, C.J. (2005) Impacts of livestock in regenerating upland birch woodlands in Scotland. Biological Conservation 123, 443-452 Full Text

Dr Meg Pollock

Plant Ecologist

Address: Future Farming Systems, SRUC Hill & Mountain Research Centre, Kirkton Farm, Crianlarich FK20 8RU

Telephone: 01838400210

Fax: 01838 400 248