What’s great about… PondNet!
PondNet is an exciting new national volunteer survey to collect information about trends in pond quality and pond species, including uncommon plants and animals.
PondNet is the first habitat based volunteer survey network of its kind and will provide invaluable information about the condition of ponds and the species they support. The survey findings will be used to help guide freshwater management and future freshwater policy.
The monitoring network was successfully trialed in Cheshire, South Hampshire and North Yorkshire in 2013. With support from The National Lottery and Natural England, we are now rolling it out nationally to create a full network across England and Wales by 2017.
The network includes fixed sites (either individual ponds or all ponds within a 1 km grid square) that we have selected at random. Importantly, we are using standardised methods and/or training for volunteers to ensure we all gather scientifically robust data.
Volunteers are able to choose which sites they would like to adopt and which wildlife group they would like to survey, depending on time availability and experience. The project also arranges all landowner permissions for this fixed network.
Alternatively, volunteers can choose to survey their own sites if they wish to sort-out the landowner permissions themselves. These extra sites form the Extended Network, which adds value to the core PondNet site data.
Through our interactive data portal ‘WaterNet’, sites can be adopted, records can be submitted and analysed. The data provided is freely available for all to download.
The portal is partially live now through the ‘Choose Your PondNet Survey Site‘ page, and open for selecting amphibian survey sites. It will be fully live by June 2015.
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