The #AncellorProject: Week One Summary

This first week has seen the capture of a dozen or so beetles in total, and a steady increase in the number of flies present on and around the bait. Here’s a quick summary of what’s been found in the pitfall trap:

Day 1: one large carabid, one small carabid (Bembidion quadrimaculatum), three small staphylinids, two collembola, one tiny spider, (several) woodlice.

Day 2: one small staphylinid

Day (3,4,5): six large carabids, one small carabid-looking beetle, two small staphylinids, one nitidulid beetle, three tiny spiders, two shiny mite-looking things

Day 6: one large carabid, one small staphylinid

Day 7: one large tegenaria spider, one harvestman, one tiny spider

There’s been a noticeable increase in the number of flies present on and around the bait and caught in the bottle trap. Eggs were first visible on day 2, but no larvae have hatched as of yet. The cold weather has most probably been a limiting factor in insect activity. There’s been no noticeable change in the diversity of insects(/arthropods) as the bait has begun to decompose.

The #AncellorProject

Yesterday (09.10.13) I set up a pitfall trap near the Ancellor building. It’s baited with a small amount of liver, and I’m hoping it will attract a few of the various insects associated with decomposition – particularly the beetles.

My intention is to check and empty the trap regularly (every day if possible, but we’ll have to see), ID as far as possible the species found there, and post the results  here at the end of each week. I’ll be leaving the trap set up for three weeks in total, until the end of October.

Suggestions are appreciated, and people are very welcome to join in – I’m more than happy for this to be a group thing. Let me know if you’re interested!

 

Hopefully the plastic box will keep out the rain and larger animals. Hopefully

Hopefully the plastic box will protect the trap from both the rain and curious vertebrates. Hopefully.

Pitfall trap, small jar of bait, bottle trap containing bait

Pitfall trap, small jar of bait, bottle trap containing bait

Looks pretty classy if I do say so myself

Looks pretty classy if I do say so myself

There's a small gap between the ground and the bottom of the box - hopefully enough to allow arthropod access!

There’s a small gap between the ground and the bottom of the box – hopefully enough to allow arthropod access!