Wildlife Garden Autumn BioBlitz – Pond Species Review Part 1|Citizen science

In the latest BioBlitz which took place in the Museum’s Wildlife Garden, we had a look in the garden’s pond to discover what kind of animals live there! We were very excited to see many of you taking part in our pond dipping and we would like to share with you what we found.

Read on to discover what we found.

Chaoborus sp, – phantom midge larvae

Phantom midge larvae found in the wildlife garden pond during the autumn BioBlitz event

These worm-like creatures are called phantom midge larvae or glass worms because their body is totally transparent. The adult of the larvae looks like a mosquito without the needle-like mouth parts. In order to survive in the lakes and ponds they hide in the bottom to avoid predators. They swim by wriggling their whole body.

Crangonyx pseudogracilis – shrimp

This shrimp is quite common in garden ponds. It shows that a pond is of good quality. It is actually an American species introduced to Britain during the last century!

Corixidae sp. – lesser water boatman

A lesser water boatman found in the pond in one of the previous BioBlitzes

One of the many water boatmen species in the UK, it is quite widespread and common in lakes, garden ponds and ditches. The lesser water boatman swims the right way up using its hind legs as paddles. Its wing cases look black or brown but if you look closely they are actually speckled or stripped.

Asellus aquaticus – the common water slater

Common water slater found in the pond during the Autumn BioBlitz

Another common pond creature is the water slater. These creatures not only resemble woodlice but they are also related to them as they are both isopods (a type of crustacean). This means they are related to crabs and lobsters! Water slaters usually hide under leaves and weeds, they have a flattened body and they crawl instead of swimming.

A big thank you to Zoe Jay Adams, the scientist who run the pond dipping activity and to all the visitors that took part!

More blogs to follow with other species we discovered in pond during the Autumn BioBlitz!




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