Work has now begun on creating a central data repository for data collected through the Riverfly Partnership. The repository is to be created by the Freshwater Biological Association, which has a long history of managing and sharing digital data resources. When complete, the repository will be much more than a store of data: it will allow data collectors to input their data directly; it will allow users to see their data in graphical form and on maps; and it will include automatic warnings if data inputted shows evidence of environmental deterioration. The repository will also be created to archive standard, meaning that all the information it contains will be clearly understandable to users and that it will be stored in a way that ensures that changes in technology will not render it useless, as has happened with many digital datasets in the past.
The repository will be designed to allow new data to be added, as well as including data already collected over the years. In the next few weeks we will be contacting RMI Groups with requests for information about current data holdings, in order to ensure that we can design a fit-for-purpose repository for all our users. The first activity will be creation of a user forum where users can register in order to discuss things and to get updates on the progress of the repository.
We request that those involved in Riverfly Monitoring look out for and respond to future requests for information. Your input will ensure that the final repository is fit for purpose for you, the end users.
Image: riverfly identification, copyright Six Mile Water Trust.