To investigate whether pollution affects the diversity of aquatic invertebrate species.

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Dyke Dipping

        Aim: To investigate whether pollution affects the diversity of aquatic invertebrate species.

        Equipment:         Wash tub,

                                Smaller Margerine Tub

                                Plastic Spoon,

                                Milk Container,


                                Species Analysis Chart.

        The wash tub has the perfect surface area to count the animals without imprisoning them, the smaller margerine tub allows for the animals to be more carefully analysed so that their species can be more easily determined, the spoons are the perfect size to remove the animals individually, using the milk container is much easier than filling up the wash tub with water because if we had to fill the tub itself up, we could fall in, and the net is designed with a tight enough mesh to capture the very miniature creatures, wihout having to bend down and scoop them out ourselves

        Method: Fill the milk container with water from the first, unpolluted dyke, and tip the contents into the wash tub. Repeat this two or three times, in order to provide sufficient depth to support the creatures from the dyke. Stand on secure ground near to the dyke so as to not slip in, and sweep the net in the dyke and empty the net into the wash tub with the dyke water in it. Tip the net upside down to do this, but make sure you dip the botton of the net into the water aswell, because some very small creatures could be caught in the net's mesh.

        Use the plastic spoons to remove the specimens from the tub and count them. Once counted, place them in the margerine tub which should have a small body of water to house the creatures. This prevents counting them repeatedly. If there are innumerable amounts of certain species, you could approximate by dividing the tub into four, counting the amount roughly in each quarter, and multiply this figure by four.

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        Once all the animals have been counted, carefully replace them into the dyke.

        Safety: Be sure to have a secure footing when doing anything near and around the dyke, to prevent falling in.

                      Before doing any activity near the dyke, cover any cuts and abrasions with micropore tape, as there are some water-carrying diseases that could enter these cuts and could become infected.

                      Wash hands thoroughly before eating and do not put your hands in your mouth.

        Fair Test: The same size net and ...

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