A list of words and phrases that appear on our website and their meanings. In an attempt to make our website as accessible as possible for all of our users.

  • Anoxic
    In this context, it refers to a lack of oxygen within the peat/soil due to a high water table. This deters decomposition and therefore sequesters Carbon and builds peat.

  • Database
    A large amount of information stored in a computer system. This is a key part of PeatDataHub’s research data management lifecycle, allowing peatland scientists to store and preserve data collected in the field.

  • Dataset
    A collection of separate sets of information that is treated as a single unit by a computer: In our case, Datasets usually consist of water table readings, peat bog depth, temperature, ecology data etc. This data can then be compiled into a database.

  • EoB / Eyes on the Bog
    The Eyes on the Bog project looks to create a low cost, repeatable and accessible long term monitoring technique for peatland science. Specifically Water Table fluctuations and peat surface movement. See more via this link: Projects – PeatDataHub or via their website: Eyes on the Bog.

  • IUCN / International Union for the Conservation of Nature
    The IUCN is a membership Union of government and civil society organisations. Together, they work to advance sustainable development and create a just world that values and conserves nature. You can find out more via their website: About IUCN | IUCN.

  • Metadata
    Metadata is used to summarise basic information about data that can make tracking and working with specific data easier. Metadata is simply data about data. This helps to organise, find and understand data, especially in the context of large databases with huge numbers of datasets.

  • Minerotrophic
    A minerotrophic peatland is defined by the fact that it receives a majority of its nutrients primarily through groundwater that flows through mineral-rich soils or rock, or surface water flowing over land. Rather than receiving nutrients from precipitation.

  • Monitoring Site
    This refers to the specific location of which a research group has decided to perform a particular study. The group will use this location to ‘monitor’ the peatland, collecting data such as temperature, pH, water table depth, precipitation level etc.

  • Ombrotrophic
    Rather like the opposite of minerotrophic, this term refers to peatlands which receive the majority of their water and nutrients from precipitation, rather than from streams or springs. These nutrients can come from sea air which has high mineral contents as well as vegetation pollen caught in rain droplets.

  • Protocol
    A research protocol is a document that describes the background, rationale, objectives, design, methodology, statistical considerations, and organisation of a clinical research project (

  • Totemic Marker
    A term used by the Eyes on the Bog project which refers to a ‘Totem’ like marker, designed by the local community or a local artist, to highlight the presence of an Eyes on the Bog project on the bog in question. Used to help raise awareness and engage a wider audience.

  • Trophic Status
    This simply refers to whether the peatland site receives its nutrients minerotrophically or ombrotrophically. See above for definitions.

  • Water Table / Water Table Depth (WTD)
    The water table is the depth underground at which the soil/peat is completely saturated with water. It is affected mostly by precipitation and/or groundwater flow. This is an important metric for peatland sites since anoxic conditions are needed for the growth of more peat. A high water table provides the anoxic conditions to reduce/prevent decomposition and therefore build peat (and sequester Carbon).