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Monitoring Riverflies

  • The Blackdown Healthy Living Centre (map)
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Organisation: Blackdown Hills AONB

Times: 09.00 am - 04.00 pm 

Price: Free

Booking essential

Please note this training is aimed at volunteers working in pairs who can commit to carrying out a minimum of three surveys each year on the River Culm and its tributaries.


The Culm Community Crayfish Project, The River Exe & Tributaries Association and The Riverfly Partnership are teaming up to provide FREE training to anyone interested in conducting regular freshwater invertebrate sampling of the upper River Culm and its tributaries. 

About the survey:

The Angler’s Riverfly Monitoring Initiative (ARMI) was launched by the Riverfly Partnership in 2007 to enable anglers and other interested groups to actively monitor and protect their local rivers. It helps rivers to be monitored more widely and at greater frequency than is possible by the Environment Agency alone. 

The ARMI monitoring technique involves pairs of volunteers taking 3-minute ‘kick samples’ from the river bed, and recording the presence and abundance of eight pollution-sensitive invertebrate groups. The focus of the sampling is on ‘riverflies’ - mayflies, stoneflies and caddisflies. These macroinvertebrates are very sensitive to pollution and are therefore good indicators of water quality; changes in species abundance may be the first sign of a pollution problem. 

If invertebrate numbers drop below expected levels the Environment Agency are informed and will take action to investigate the suspected pollution incident. The Riverfly data held by each river group will also allow for long-term changes to be identified, and the regular presence of volunteers on the river will discourage potential polluters.

Equipment needed:

Wellies, waders if you have them and lunch. All other equipment will be provided.


Telephone: 01823 681 937

Earlier Event: May 12
Dawn Chorus Walk
Later Event: May 12
Orchids at Babcary Meadows