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This programme visits the Tay Estuary in Scotland and looks at the work of the Tay Estuary Research Group, which is part of the University of Dundee. The tides are recorded and variations in salini...ty are measured by vertical profiling. Water movement in the estuary is studied in a number of ways, using current meters, float drogues, fluorescent dyes and by experimenting with a physical model of the whole estuary using time lapse film. sediments are examined at two principal locations - the mobile sediments and mega-ripples of the central sand banks, and the finer sediments of the reed marshes that are found on the north shore. The estuarine fauna is examined at two locations, and the programme contains some stunning close-ups of creatures such as lug worms, mussel shells and other common sand flat animals. Specially filmed helicopter shots are used to build up a picture of the whole estuary. The hope is that the programme will encourage students to go off independently and visit a local estuary.
Metadata describing this Open University video programme
Module code and title: S334, Oceanography
Item code: S334; 08
Recording date: 27-09-1977
First transmission date: 1978
Published: 1978
Rights Statement:
Restrictions on use:
Duration: 00:24:00
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Producer: Peter Clark
Contributors: John Charlton; Allan Jones; John McManus; Sandra Smith
Publisher: BBC Open University
Keyword(s): Ecology; Estuarine fauna; Estuary; Mega-ripples; Reed beds; Salinity; Sewage outfalls; Tidal currents
Footage description: Panoramic views of Dundee and the Tay Estuary. Sandra Smith (voiceover) introduces the programme. Over aerial shots of the Tay Estuary, Sandra Smith explains how the tide is monitored in the Estuary. Shots of a graph showing the tides and of an animation showing mixing of fresh and sea water during tides. Also shots of a model which uses dyes to illustrate mixing and turbulence. John McManus (Tay Estuary Research Centre) explains how salinity of water at points in the Estuary is profiled. He explains the techniques and shows the apparatus used. John Charlton, with a radar float drogue, explains how tidal currents are studied with such equipment. Charlton, in a boat, goes on to explain how tidal currents are also studied with the use of fluorescent dyes. Shots of the estuary from the road bridge. Charlton briefly mentions two simpler methods for studying tidal currents - observing their effect on ships and buoys at anchor. John Charlton, standing next to a large scale model of the Tay Estuery, explains how this model can be used to study tidal currents in detail. Time lapse film of the model simulates tidal currents in the Estuary. John McManus, on a sandbank in the Estuary, explains how the sandbanks are built up and shifted by the tidal currents. Time lapse film of the sandbanks taken from the railway bridge illustrates the movement of sediments. Allan Jones, on the sandflats, examines some of the fauna and organic debris found there. Shots of Jones arriving by Land Rover and digging in the sand for specimens. Jones moves to a lower level beach and continues to dig and examine various fauna. Shots of Lugworm, Corophiun, Ragworm and Hydrobia (all burrowing animals). Commentary by Sandra Smith describes their habitat. Jones, on the beach, looks at the tracks of the bivalve Macoma ballica. Shots of Macoma burying itself in the sand. Allan Jones walks over a mussel bed. He describes the mussel and its habitat. Close up shots of a mussel. Commentary by Sandra Smith describes the animal. John McManus, in the reed marsh at the upper end of the estuary, discusses the environment there and the effect of reeds on sediment build up. McManus examines some of the reeds in close up. Over aerial film shots of the sandbanks in the Estuary and of docks and factories, Sandra Smith sums up the programme.
Master spool number: 6HT/72583
Production number: FOU1593P
Videofinder number: 879
Available to public: no