Invertebrates, Amphibians and Reptiles
An important component of the aquatic ecosystem, invertebrates are consumers and providers, detritivores, predators and prey. Water quality can be estimated by their presence and species composition within the waterbody. They are a useful predictor of fish activity and the composition of the fish assemblage. Invertebrate assemblage composition can be used as an indicator of pollution, particularly chronic pollution events. Invertebrates are also an important food source for fish species. Within the aquatic system, many terrestrial invertebrates start out life under the water, before completing their life cycle above the surface. BFJ have considerable experience in invertebrate sampling and species identification. We work with the water industry, corporate and civil engineering sectors as well as NGO’s, rivers trusts, local interest groups, and fisheries to provide effective surveys that generate accurate data on the invertebrate composition of the waterbody.
We also carry out surveys for macro-invertebrates such as native white-clawed crayfish and invasive species, such as signal crayfish. We undertake trapping and torch searches,
as well as counts and density estimates.We provide full reporting services, data analysis, recommendations, habitat design, creation and implementation and mitigation measures to ensure the native crayfish is adequately protected while assisting with planning and development opportunities, simultaneously improving crayfish habitat.
We venture out of the aquatic environment to survey terrestrial invertebrates too. We undertake dragonfly and damselfly surveys and provide riverine fly life assessments.Within the river corridor we also undertake surveys for amphibians and reptiles.
Biological Surveys and Laboratory Services
Our fully equipped laboratory based in Leicestershire, are able to provide services covering the following areas of biological analytics:
- Water Quality
- Low DO’s
- Algae sampling and identification, including marine algae and algal cell counts
- Prymnesium presence/absence
- Zooplankton sampling and identification, density cell counts
- Invertebrate sampling and identification, including score analysis (ie BMWP)
BFJ are one of only a few consultancies that offer in-house laboratory services, providing the client with continuity, a clear audit trail of work load, peace of mind, and contract accountability.
Our experienced laboratory staff have a wide range of skills based upon biological monitoring and assessment and underpinned with broad ecological knowledge. Several have MRSB status and have previous experience working in this capacity for Government Agencies. We provide a rapid service, targeted at the client’s needs and specifics of the individual project, on time and within budget.
Our laboratory has the capacity to handle larger contracts as well as the flexibility to service smaller projects. We provide laboratory services to the aquaculture sector as well as for fishery owners, local councils, river trusts, NGO’s and corporate clients.
Algal populations are present within all waterbodies and form an essential component of the aquatic ecosystem, consuming nutrients present within the waterbody, and in turn providing food for zooplankton. Left unchecked, they can create poor water clarity and effect macrophyte growth, leading to loss in aquatic diversity. We undertake algae sampling within freshwater lakes and stillwaters, as well as riverine systems. We provide diagnostic services for algal species identification and cell counts. Additionally, we provide sampling and identification services for marine algae.
An essential component of the freshwater ecosystem, zooplankton are responsible for exerting grazing pressure on the algal component of the waterbody, helping to maintain water clarity which in turn benefits macrophyte growth and creates habitat diversity for invertebrates and fish. We carry out zooplankton sampling across the UK, principally within lakes and stillwaters. We are able to provide species identification and density count services for our clients, both in the corporate and the environmental sectors.