Rotifer with oblique lighting

Simple slide of Pondlife
Penny Thoyts

It is very simple to make a slide of pondlife and you will see an enormous variety of microscopic life in each drop. 

You will need: A microscope slide, a coverslip, a pipette, and jam jar for pondwater.

Be careful that it is safe before going near a pond, make sure the pond is not too deep and you are able to get out easily if you slip and fall. The sides of ponds can be very slippery. Collect some pondwater (or water from a puddle) and carry it home in a jam jar or specimen pot. I like to gather a sample of any green slime from rocks or the banks of the pond too.
Using your pipette or dropper place one drop of pondwater on a clean microscope slide and put a coverslip on top. 

Put your slide under the microscope and see what you can see, tilting the mirror slightly (if you have one) can help you see see-through creatures. 

There are numerous books and websites on identifying microscopic pondlife.
The Freshwater Microscopist by one of our supporters, Tony Pattinson is a good resource. 
ISBN : 9781320438469

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