Rivers

Rivers

© Steve Page

Our rivers and wetlands are home to some incredible wildlife, but it's under great pressure.

We're lucky to have stunning, wildlife-rich rivers flowing through the heart of our counties. These much-loved waterways are home to scurrying water vole, elusive otter, and darting dragonflies and damselflies, and a whole host of other species. 

Kingfisher on a branch

© Jon Hawkins - Surrey Hills Photography

Rivers under threat

Pollution, water being taken for our drinking supplies, and changes to the ways rivers and land around them are managed are all having an impact. It's estimated that more than half of our freshwater species are now in decline.

Keeping rivers flowing for wildlife

We're pushing for new measures to:

  • Keep our rivers clean and free from fertilisers, sediment and other pollutants
  • Reduce the impacts of water taken from our rivers for our taps
  • Restore habitats for wildlife along river banks
  • Work with rivers and their floodplains to improve habitat for wildlife and protect lives and property
Barton Carrier at Winnall Moors

© Steve Page

Winnall Moors nature reserve

Our Winnall Moors nature reserve has reduced the impact of flooding in Winchester. By allowing the water meadows to flood - using sluices and carriers to direct excess water into the meadows - we’ve dramatically reduced the speed by which flood water enters the city. 

At the same time our conservation work has seen wildlife like otter, water vole and a host of bird life flourish at the reserve.

Split level view of the River Itchen, Itchen Stoke Mill

© Linda Pitkin/2020VISION

PR19

This year our water companies are consulting on the future of our water supplies - this is our chance to protect wildlife for years to come.

Take action

More on our work on rivers