Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Freshwater Fishes

Next week we will begin introducing you to the 26 families of Freshwater Fishes that you need to know. Some you already learned in our lessons on Marine Fishes. However, our expectations will be a little different as we concentrate on regional fishes.

You will identify many fishes to species. You will be given a jar of unknown fishes to correctly identify by use of dichotomous keys and other descriptions. By the end of April you will collect fishes from two local streams and should be able to identify the fishes in the field by sight.

So continue to sketch and photograph fish body forms and identifying characteristics. Photograph specimens and zoom in on the unique identifying characteristics. A picture is worth a thousand words and there is no substitute for discovering and describing these for yourself. Quiz each other on new specimens. The more unknown specimens you examine, the more your confidence will grow.

Only 7 lab periods until our field trips -- will you be ready?

What is this fish? Class? Order? Family? Genus? Species?

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