V

Seashores

There are many opportunities for insects among the rocks, sand plants, and decaying seaweed along coasts. Hectics and flies are very abundant. A few insects are even adapted for going underwater occasiouitl/y.

Towns and Gardens

. Many arthropods thrive in towns. Some species have taken up residence inside buildings or are associated with garbage. The garden can be a refuge and home to numerous arthropod specie

Bl imrli;-hee

S tudying Insects

YOU CAN I,EARN a lot about insects from reference books, but if you really want to understand their world then you have to experience them at first hand. 1 here is no substitute for

What You Will Need

It is not necessary to invest in expensive equipment to study insects. Various sorts of collecting net are easy to make (sec facing page). Below are a few other items that you will need, or arc simply useful:

• I land lens (x 10 magnification) and low-power lens, for viewing at close range.

• Camera, sketch book, and notebook, to record your observations.

• Measuring tape and a stopwatch, for determining running or flying speeds.

• Sieve, for sifting leaf litter.

• Mooter (see facing page), also known as an aspirator, essential for collecting small insects without harming them.

• Pond net, a pair of waterproof boots, and plastic containers for viewing aquatic species.

patient observation: if you want to know exactly how a spider spins its web, it is best simply to sit and watch. Insects arc endlessly fascinating, so take the time to observe their busy lives.

x 10 hand lens, essential for identification •

► lov -power lens, for studying behavior dose up

11 )enti eying insects Identifying an insert to the level of order is fairly straightforward with a little practice. However, to identify the species is considerably more difficult. While some insects are very distinctive, many bear an extremely close resemblance to other species, and are distinguishable only by minute characteristics that can be observed using a hand lens.

field notebook with blank pages for sketches and lined pages for notes •

macro lens for photographing objects dose up leaves and flower s are good places to photograph inset ts

PllOTC XjRAPHY

A single lens r ef lex camera (SLR) with a 50mm or / 00mm macro lens is ideal Most zoom lenses with a macro setting are not good enough for photographing small insects. You may also need flash to maximize the depth of field.

field notebook with blank pages for sketches and lined pages for notes •

ii ii u u u - - n 'ii i'ùnn macro lens for photographing objects dose up leaves and flower s are good places to photograph inset ts

Sketching Insec ts

/)rawing is an excellent way to record what you see, and you will also learn a great deal from close observation. Remember to recor d details in the booh of when and where you found the insect.

0 0

Post a comment