Become A Citizen Scientist

Come and help us work towards a river Dee free of pollution and full of wildlife. Join one of our citizen science schemes to survey the Dee.

Our citizen science initiatives range from pollution monitoring to helping us identify invertebrates to tell us about the health of the river and how we can help it. We regularly run training sessions to become involved in these opportunities.

Pollution monitoring

Citizen scientists monitor tributaries of the Dee by measuring phosphate, a good indicator of pollution, and recording visual observations of pollution. The scheme spots pollution events, identifies degrading waterbodies and targets our work. Support is provided to report regulatory failures to government bodies or identify and implement solutions in non-regulatory cases.

Invertebrate identification

SmartRivers is a national citizen science project that analyses aquatic invertebrates to monitor the health of our rivers. In partnership with Wildfish, we monitor invertebrates in three principal rivers within the Dee: River Alyn, River Ceiriog and Aldford Brook. Citizen scientists help to identify the invertebrates to species level. Each river has five sampling locations which provide data that will indicate long-term trends within the rivers, allowing us to monitor the impact of our work.

I first saw the Welsh Dee Trust call for volunteers on the website of the angling club I’m a member of. It appealed to me because I’d been concerned about the effects of an outfall from a sewage works into the River Ceiriog. Volunteering for the Trust meant I could test the water rather than just using my eyes and nose!

With all of the national publicity about the condition of our rivers, it’s satisfying to know that I’m part of trying to do something about it. Hopefully, as more people get involved and as more testing is being done to identify problems locally, those who pollute will think twice and make sure waterways are safe for people and for wildlife.

Iain, Selattyn

 Citizen science training to monitor pollution | © Jim Holmes

James, Welsh Dee Trust citizen scientist and recipient of our 2022 River Guardian Award, with Peter Powell, CEO

I’ve been enjoying the pollution monitoring. Really like seeing new places along the rivers and become more familiar with the landscape in which I live. Having fun doing it is important I think.

Your project came at the right time for me as I wanted to do something more meaningful so thank you for letting me take part.

James, Wrexham