SNH Invertebrate Site Condition Monitoring 2015: Maidens to Doonfoot SSSI
This dataset was gathered as part of a Scottish Natural Heritage contract in 2015. It provides the results of invertebrate surveys designed to inform Site Condition Monitoring at Maidens to Doonfoot SSSI. These surveys targeted the notified invertebrate assemblage features (Tropiphorus elevatus, Cercyon depressus, and Ochthebius lejolisii), but other taxa were also recorded.
Maidens to Doonfoot SSSI
The survey aimed to detect the presence of the invertebrate assemblage feature (Tropiphorus elevatus, Cercyon depressus, and Ochthebius lejolisii), which is a notified feature of Maidens to Doonfoot SSSI, in order to inform the site condition assessment.
We have a very high level of confidence in this dataset. Where necessary, rare specimens were compared against reference collections, those held in the National Museums Scotland collection and identities confirmed with experts.
Surveys targeted the invertebrate assemblage features of Maidens to Doonfoot, however other taxa were also recorded. We used a variety of techniques to sample aquatic and terrestrial Coleoptera species. Aquatic species were sampled at 20 sites throughout the entire SSSI complex using pond netting. At each point we worked an area of 2 m2 with a D-framed net, mesh size 1 mm, and netted debris which was then sorted in the field. We identified and counted the majority of beetles in the field and returned them to the water. Specimens unidentifiable in the field were kept for confimation and to act as vouchers. Inventory samples (working until no more species could be found) were taken at sites 1 and 4-6. Heaps of wrack were investigated by sifting material over a tray and watching carefully for beetles, which play dead when disturbed. Rock pools were investigated by stirring up the bottom and edges to cause the beetles to float, allowing them to be collected using a tea strainer. Aquatic samples were taken on 14 and 20 May 2015, and 17, 27, and 28 August 2015.
Terrestrial Coleoptera were sampled using sweep nets and Bugvac (suction sampling). A modified leaf blower (Husqvarna 125BVX) was used to vacuum sample invertebrates from ground level by pressing the bugvac nozzle to the ground for 10 seconds at five points. Specimens were emptied from the net into a white plastic tray, collected, and stored in labeled tubes. We concentrated on bugvac sampling and sweeping areas of woodland with a ground flora of doga^??s mercury in order to find T. elevatus. Areas that were swept or disturbed were subsequently vacuum sampled to collect anything that dropped during sweeping. We completed 11 vacuum samples and 2 sweep samples on 27 and 28 August 2015.
Wherever possible, specimens were identified in the field. If not, specimens were pinned or preserved in isopropanol for later identification in the lab with stereo- or compound-microscopes as appropriate. Voucher specimens were retained where appropriate. Where necessary, we compared specimens with museum collections to confirm identification. We focussed identification effort on the target taxa for notified features. However, non-target specimens were identified to species level as time allowed, providing a more comprehensive species list for the sites.
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