The Bristol Avon WaterBlitz returns this July, and it’s bigger than ever! BART is encouraging as many citizen scientists as possible to get out to their local watercourse and sample it for water quality to help monitor the health of our rivers and streams. Sign ups have been rolling in over the past month, but there is now only 1 week remaining to sign up!
BART are seeking enthusiastic volunteers between 9th – 12th July to take samples during their time spent near the river; whether it’s during daily exercise, rambling, fishing, or while exploring for the best sampling spot.
As a citizen scientist you will sample your chosen river or stream using our free and simple-to-use water testing kits which will be provided by us when you sign up to the project. The water testing kits will test for nitrate and phosphate levels, which will provide a high-level indication of water quality at that point. An increase of nutrient levels in a river can artificially stimulate plant and weed growth, as well as algae. Algae uses up valuable oxygen in the river and blocks out light and smothers river bed gravels, which can impact the wildlife that depends on the river, such as fish, mammals and invertebrates.
By uploading your results to the FreshWater Watch website, your results will be published on The Bristol Avon WaterBlitz Explorer. Check out the data explorer to find out how the health of your local river or stream has changed during the past 5 years of WaterBlitz events. This interactive map of the catchment demonstrates the distribution of samples taken as well as helping to identify areas for further investigations and future conservation efforts.
The 2021 Bristol Avon WaterBlitz is a fantastic opportunity to contribute to the improvement of our river ecosystems and it is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in green and blue spaces following a challenging time during lockdown.
Make sure to sign up before 6th July to ensure you receive your kit in time for the event.
We are pleased to be hosting two local events on the River Biss and Bristol Frome! These events give you the opportunity to collect your requested kit in person, with members of the BART team demonstrating how to take the samples and giving information on what your results mean. Please find details of each event below.
Local Waterblitz events on Saturday 10th July from 10am to 2pm.
Bristol Frome: Oldbury Court Estate, Fishponds, Bristol, BS16 2JH. This event has been made possible by an award from Postcode Local Trust, a grant-giving charity funded entirely by players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
River Biss: Biss Meadows Country Park, Trowbridge, BA14 7EH. This event is being run in partnership with Wiltshire Wildlife Trust who have supported the event through their ABBA (A Better Biss Approach) project – an exciting 5-year project of practical action, innovative community and business engagement and high-level strategic planning across the River Biss and its tributaries.
Thank you for taking part and helping us protect and enhance our rivers for people and for nature.
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