We are proud to award Cyril Bennett an honorary life membership of S&TC for his massive contribution to protecting river ecology in general and to the Riverfly Census and SmartRivers in particular. He has been a fly fisherman for 60 years which has stimulated his keen interest in riverfly identification and aquatic ecology.
Cyril is a founder member of the Riverfly Partnership; pioneered the Angler’s Monitoring Initiative (AMI) to highlight pollution problems and initiated the River Invertebrate Identification & Monitoring (RIIM) course to exploit species-level analysis. Research work with the John Spedan Lewis Trust on the River Test at Leckford including Riverfly reintroductions after a pollution incident.
He has achieved academic distinction while working full time. He has a PhD with the University of London (Queen Mary College) on the Ecology of Mayflies, is a Fellow of the Royal Entomological Society (FRES) and has taught ecology at the Open University.
He has also put his lifelong interest in insect macro photography to great effect: he pioneered the development of a pictorial-based App, using his images, to aid species identification. He co-authored ‘A Pictorial Guide to British Ephemeroptera’ (Field Studies Council) and ‘Matching the Hatch’ (Merlin Unwin Books).
He was awarded MBE (for services to Riverfly conservation) in the 2013 Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Reporting with a purpose
S&TC are a national organisation and we use evidence from local case studies to help instigate policy changes that will benefit UK wild fish populations. But, this is just part of the value - we are making all our Riverfly Census findings available so they can be used to inform local management and drive action.
Each individual river report is based on three years of surveying data. Where possible, we have linked up our findings with other existing literature and data. Using the available information we suggest where local fishing and/or conservation groups can focus their management efforts to achieve the best health outcomes for each of the 12 original Census rivers.
Some of our local reports can be found on the slider below. Alternatively, visit the Riverfly Census page and scroll down to the map.