Water Quality Monitoring Surveys

A quarterly survey of water quality across the catchment. Volunteers use simple test kits to measure the levels of two widespread nutrient pollutants, nitrate and phosphate, in their local streams, ponds, ditches and in the one and only River Thame.

Freshwater wildlife has evolved for millions of years in low nutrient conditions and so requires these conditions to survive, especially sensitive and many of our now rarest wetland plants and animals. When nutrients are added they act like fertilizer, causing fast growing and vigorous species, such as algae, to out compete slower growing and more sensitive species. In extreme cases the water can turn green and smelly. However the effects can be much more subtle than this, so even if water looks clear, it doesn’t necessary mean it is un-impacted by pollution.

By monitoring the catchment we can identify trends in water quality and target areas for future conservation work.

If you are interested in signing up to be a water quality monitor please email Hannah at hannah@riverthame.org

The survey

  1. Selected a waterbody from our online map [see right] or choose a local waterbody yourself (i.e. pond, stream, ditch, river).
  2. Every three months (Jan, Apr, Jul, Oct) collect a small water sample from your site(s) and test it for nitrate and phosphate pollution using our simple quick kits.
  3. Submit your results online through the form found at the bottom of this page.

It’s as simple as that!

Sign up for a site

If you are interested in taking on a monitoring sites please visit our online maps to find a location near you.

Test kit – How to video

Please see our short ‘how to‘ video for a demonstration of the test kits.


Sending in your results

To send in your results please fill in form below. Once you’ve added all your results, make sure to click ‘submit all entries’ at the bottom.

If your result matches a value exactly please select the higher corresponding category. For example if your phosphate result is 0.5mg/L exactly, please tick the 0.5-1 category.

If need to find out the grid reference for your site please see your site information pack or email Hannah (hannah@riverthame.org) to find out.

Submit your water quality results

  • The data obtained will only be used with regards to this enquiry and will not be used for future marketing or passed on to any third parties. This is in accordance with GDPR. By filling in the information you give your explicit consent for your data to be used for this purpose only.

  • Name of waterbody Date waterbody sampled Waterbody type Grid Reference Nitrate Score Phosphate Score  
    There are no Entries.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.