There are 29 species of earthworm living freely in soils in the UK. They are vital to the economic health of our country, as they are crucial for soil health, food production, waste decomposition and even flood mitigation.
This course will provide an introduction to identifying earthworms using the FSC AIDGAP Key to the Earthworms of the UK & Ireland. The course will include a short presentation introducing the ecological groups of earthworms and features used to identify specimens to species level. During the course participants will:
- Have learnt about the different ecological groups (or ecotypes) of earthworms
- Gain experience looking at earthworm ID features using a microscope.
- Use an ID key to determine earthworm specimens accurately to species level.
- Know how to take their interest further.
Please note that this course will using specimens that have been killed and preserved.
Spaces are limited by the number of microscopes and booking is essential. This course is heavily subsidised by the FSC BioLinks Project (funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund).
About the tutor
Keiron Derek Brown first became interested in invertebrates during a field-based entomology module at university and went on to volunteer on soil biodiversity research projects at the Natural History Museum (London). This included sorting samples of inverts to order level and sampling inverts across the New Forest (Hampshire) and the Malaysian rainforests of Borneo. Keiron now manages the FSC BioLinks project, with the aim of inspiring amateur naturalists to take up the identification and recording of invert groups that are often forgotten and rarely recorded. In his spare time he is a trustee of the London Natural History Society and is the national recorder for earthworms (running the National Earthworm Recording Scheme on behalf of the Earthworm Society of Britain).
About FSC London: Bushy Park
FSC London: Bushy Park, c/o The Royal Parks, The Stockyard, Bushy Park, London
FSC work in the Stockyard Education Centre (TW12 2EJ), on Hampton Court Road. It is within the Park offices complex and is a working stockyard, with large vehicle movements throughout the day. A map of the Park can be found on The Royal Parks Website which shows the Park offices, and The Stockyard Education Centre is marked on the downloadable map.
By Train: the nearest stations are Hampton Court or Hampton station, both about a 20 min walk from the Centre.
By Bus: 111 (from Kingston station) or R68 (from Hampton Court Station), stop:Garrick Villa.
By Car: Pay and display parking is available in the Park (See The Royal Parks website for details and prices).