Riverfly Monitoring - how you can help

Riverfly Monitoring is our flagship citizen science project. Our volunteer monitors sample river bugs throughout Bradford and the Dales to assess the effects of pollution on life in the river.

Riverfly populations are one of the key indicators of long-term river health problems, as the insects living in the river fall quickly if pollution is present and take a long time to recover after a pollution event.

In 2024 we are recruiting new volunteer Riverfly Monitors who are able to monitor rivers in Bradford /Bingley/Keighley and Skipton and the Dales. Read on to explore how you can get involved.

Our volunteers are trained to a standard agreed by The Riverfly Partnership, thus ensuring consistency and accuracy, and you will receive a Certificate of Competence demonstrating your achievement.

This year, we have two training programmes on offer (see below):

Shipley Glen Beck Blitz

Riverfly evenings

Once you have completed at least two taster events, and feel confident in your abilities, you may attend one of three qualification days we will be running.

Have a read of our guide to becoming a Riverfly Monitor with the Aire Rivers Trust.

To receive full details of our Riverfly qualification events, please register on our volunteer portal.

How Do I Get Involved?

We will run several training programs along the rivers Aire and Worth to develop new volunteers to achieve their Riverfly Monitoring Certificate. Our training is a mixture of hands-on and classroom lerning, delivered to groups of enthusiasts like yourself.

In 2024 we are operating two main training programs:

Shipley Glen Beck Blitz

Run on the last Saturday morning of the month our new volunteers and experienced monitors sample a number of points along Loadpit Beck to teach Riverfly identification alongside building a long-term picture of the health of the water in this local beauty spot.

Everyone is welcome to come along to learn a bit about river bugs even if you don’t think you will become a river monitor.


Riverfly Evenings

For those wanting to learn more about Riverfly sampling in 2024 we will be running taster sessions on Thursday evenings throughout the summer along the Rivers Aire and Worth for new volunteers.


Bingley, Baildon & Bradford

Join us to learn some Riverfly ID and meet members of the Bradford and Middle Aire Monitoring Hubs


Keighley & Worth Valley

Join us as part of our River Worth Restoration Project to help expand our River Worth Monitoring Hub.

July – August

Skipton & The Dales

Join us on Eller Beck to learn Riverfly ID and set up the brand new Skipton Monitoring Hub.


The video to the right features a monitor from Action for the River Kennet carrying out a kick sample. The Field Studies Council, who produce fold-out ID guides to support species identification, also have a kick sampling for beginners video. When you undertake training with one of our accredited tutors, you will cover both the theory and practical aspects of how to carry out Riverfly Monitoring effectively and safely.

How you can help us in 2024

Thanks for reading this far, we hope you have been enthused to volunteer as a Riverfly Monitor. Your next step is to click on the button below, which will take you to our volunteering portal Better Impact, where you can register your interest.

Register your interest as a Riverfly Monitor

© Copyright Aire Rivers Trust 2020
The Aire Rivers Trust is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales No: 07464227 and a Registered Charity No: 1145609
Registered Office at: 38 Morton Lane, East Morton, Keighley BD20 5RS
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