Water Fleas

Adrian Chalkley, Suffolk County Recorder: Freshwater Invertebrates, attended our open day on 1st April and took some pondlife specimens home for identification down the microscope.  Here are the results:

Acroperus harpae

Acroperus harpae







Chydorus sphaericus

Simocephalus vetulus










“The photos are all taken through my microscope and the water fleas are between 0.4 and 0.8 mm across.

Nothing rare here, in fact Chydorus sphaericus and Simocephalus vetulus are two of the commonest species in Suffolk. The other, Acroperus harpae is an infrequent find in the county but too little records exist to draw conclusions from this; though it’s a useful record.

One of the identifying features of Acroperus harpae is the presence of lines of groups of  tiny bristles called squamae along the post abdomen (shown by the blue arrow, the post-abdomen having been extracted from inside the body of the water flea).



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