Tuesday, 24 November 2015

A Bug Blitz

The Coordinator of Waterwatch in this area announced a Bug Blitz on 24 November.  I joined her for the last site of the day, where the Molonglo flows under Yass Rd near Queanbeyan (its actually just in the ACT).
 I helped a bit by doing some netting in the shallow bits.
 Here I am emptying my catch into one of the buckets.
 Deb wore waders so got somewhat deeper ...
 .. in fact a lot deeper.
She was keen to sample from both the reeds in the area.

 So what did we catch.  A good range of things.  I didn't photograph the one sort of fish we found (Gambusia sp. a feral pest species known as Mosquito Fish or Plague Minnow - the latter gives a better feel for its depredations on frogspawn and tadpoles, as well as clearing up mozzies).

Here is an insect which was scooped up from the reeds - not an aquatic species.
 The rest are some of the wide variety of aquatic invertebrates we found.  I could barely identify any of them but Deb was well on top of matters and I hope she'll be able to correct any misremembering in what follows.  They were mainly photographed in ice cube containers following extraction from our buckets.  No bugs were harmed in the making of this post!

This first example is a back-swimmer, one of the Order Hemiptera, or true bugs.
Thanks to Deb reminding me, I now know this is a beetle (Coleopterid) larva!
 A Mayfly nymph (Order Ephemeroptera)
 Possibly a Damselfly nymph, but the presence of the gills suggests another Mayfly nymph?
 This one is definitely a Damselfly nymph!
 Finally some Shrimps of which we found quite a few.
Not photographed were a bunch of Waterboatmen, some Diptera larvae, several mites (Arachnids rather than insects) and at least one snail.

A great couple of hours!  Thanks you Deb.

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