An introduction toall things about Water Fleas and identification.
The Virtual Pond Dip:
An introduction to microscopic pond life
The Freshwater Life site:
This site is a growing resource includes some downloadable keys
The Freshwater Biological Association site:
Worth looking at for the range of keys available, although a full set would be very expensive.
The Mayfly Recording Scheme website:
Information on studying Mayflies and descriptions of the 51 species found in the UK
CAMSTARS ~ The River Flies Recording Schemes website:
Information and contact details for Mayflies, Stoneflies & Caddis recording
.. has information on aquatic bugs in several downloadable magazines
COURSES IN 2012
Four day Aquatic Invertebrates
Tuesday 10 April - Friday 13 April
This is the full four day course I have been running
for several years now. Field trips to local rivers
and to local ponds allow students to collect inverts
for later work in the lab at Flatford. If you bring
collecting tubes you can of course leave with the
start of your own voucher collection.
A very comprehensive selection of both current and also older keys can be used by students to practise, with individual help, the identication of their catch. This has proved very useful to many students in gaining familiarity with a number of groups and often has led to students deciding, on completion of the course, to specialise in one or more favoured groups. You are welcome to concentrate on your own particular favourite group or get a general overview of freshwater life.
By the last day the group will have amassed quite a comprehensive species list from the sites visited and we then cover several of the techniques which have been devised to analyse freshwater sites. This allows us to obtain several metrics or measurements of the water quality and the conservation value of the sites. Students will also leave with a full trial copy of my shareware software called SAFIS which automates all these metrics, requiring only that the species list is pasted in before a full report is output.
Identifying Freshwater Snails Weekend
Friday 28 September - Sunday 30 September
This course deals with the univalve freshwater
molluscs, the bivalves being omitted due to the
time constraints imposed in a weekend.
Although there will be limited time to go out and collect snails a good selection of preserved specimens from a variety of sites will be available to ensure you are able to examine and identify a wide range of the available species, and it is also possible for you to bring along specimens of your own which you have collected local to your own home.
The area around Flatford is rich in molluscs and during last year’s course well over half of the British freshwater fauna was found during field excursions. This allowed course participants ample opportunity to examine living material and observe behaviour. Up to date keys and reference data on species habitat and conservation importance will be provided for future use. This course concentrates on the use of the snail shells and shape differences as identification features. Prior knowledge of terminology is not required.
At present the only easily available key to freshwater snails is a limited number of facsimile editions of the Freshwater Biological Association's original 1977 publication. Whilst a new, simplified key is in preparation from the FSC there is no publication date as yet. Students on this course will receive free copies of an unpublished but updated key with species new to Britain and species name changes added as well as habitat and conservation information.