River Monitoring Scheme

Angus Menzies and I are  the coordinators for the River Monitoring Scheme of the Dorset Wildlife Trust. We are closely associated with a similar scheme run by the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust. The scheme is of interest to keen anglers and wildlife enthusiasts alike, who both share a concern for the present and future health of our rivers.

The River Monitoring Scheme is based on the counting at regular intervals of key river insect species and other invertebrate groups as a method of assessing river quality. Many insect and invertebrate species are extremely sensitive to pollution levels and therefore their numbers act as an early warning system of any potential problems.

The methodology used is that of the Riverfly Partnership (www.riverflies.org). The numbers of 8 different groups of insects and other invertebrates are counted. Monitors are asked to carry out the surveys on a monthly basis between April and September, ideally at the same time each month, (weather and river conditions permitting). Many of our volunteers carry on outside these months, if it is safe to do, and also monitor redds (Brown Trout, and Salmon & Sea Trout spawning sites). Generally speaking these surveys take a minimum time of one hour.

On May 18th of this year we shall run a training day in Dorset both for potential monitors and also  for those who would like a refresher. A similar day is being run at Langford Lakes on the River Wylye north west of Salisbury on 27th April 2013, for those who are unable to make the Dorset date.

It is intended to run a third training day later in the summer. If interested, please contact:

James Parkin or Angus Menzies Dorset Wildlife Trust  01305 217 976 or jparkin@dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk

With best wishes
James Parkin and Angus Menzies

Annual Meeting

Dorset Wildlife Trust River Monitoring Scheme

13th April 2013, 09.00 –12.30

Brooklands Farm, Forston, Dorchester DT2 7AA

Presentations will include

  • Update on the Dorset River Monitoring Scheme 
  • Monitoring on the River Allen 
  • South West Crayfish Project and Biosecurity
  • Progress on River Restoration in Dorset
  • The importance of the 8 invertebrate groups in River Ecology
  • Riverfly Partnership—New Developments

Contact James Parkin 
Conservation Officer (Land use planning and rivers and wetlands)
Dorset Wildlife Trust
01305 217 976