Citizen Science

Citizen Science

Citizen-science volunteers are helping us collect evidence of the current condition of the River Chess, so we can work to improve it.


The River Chess and its catchment is a precious landscape and resource – important for both people and wildlife. It faces many pressures from over abstraction to habitat loss, climate change to development. But there are lots of ways that we can all help to turn these challenges into opportunities, helping nature’s recovery and preserving our important natural resources.

We can all make a difference to the river, whether it’s in a big or small way. From adjusting how we use water to undertaking practical work to protect the river, collective action can help protect and enhance the catchment that we value.

“I enjoy taking part in habitat surveys and water sampling and have found it very interesting to learn about the river and its ecology in the process. The Chess Valley is stunning and, as a Citizen Scientist, it has been a great bonus to be able to visit beautiful sites along the river that I would never have seen otherwise.” – Sally B.

“Great team!” – Ken A.

Citizen science surveys

Water quality surveys

Our citizen scientists have been collecting important water quality data to help us understand where improvements could be made.

Ecology surveys

Biodiversity is a key indicator of environmental health; our citizen scientists are helping us monitor species abundances and improve habitat quality in the Chess catchment.

Citizen science portal

We’ve designed and created a portal for our citizen scientists to access anything they might need to help with surveys,...

Upcoming Events

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Riverfly training day

  • 3 August 2024
  • 9:00

The Chilterns Chalk Stream Project are hosting this Riverfly monitoring training day...

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A walk in the fascinating world of Ancient and Veteran Trees

  • 11 July 2024
  • 19:00

An evening guided walk in the world of ancient and...

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Chess Priority Ponds Training evening

  • 2 July 2024
  • 18:30

Get involved in our landscape survey and help guide conservation...

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Monthly Newsletter

Interested in what we’ve been doing?

View our previous monthly newsletters and/or sign-up to receive regular updates about citizen science survey results, events, projects led by partner organisations and much more.

Get in touch

The Smarter Water Catchment initiative was designed to involve the local community in any way possible.

Contact our Citizen Science Coordinator, Hannah, to ask any questions, make suggestions or leave comments about our citizen science surveys throughout the Chess catchment.

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Chilterns Chalk Streams Project

Learn about our flagship partnership project, committed to conserving our threatened chalk streams and the wildlife they hold.
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Keep up to date

If you’d like to receive our monthly newsletter with survey results, volunteer stories, event dates, information about restorative work and more, please do sign up below!