BIOL 487L - Ichthyology Lab

Time: Wednesday 2:00-5:00, Room: Castetter 120

TA: Wade Wilson, 277-4191,

Office Hours: Mondays 10-11, Winnings (coffee house; 111 Harvard), or by appointment, email is the most effective way of reaching me.

 Lab Policy and Grading:

Active participation is required in all lab activities. Valid excuses for absence are limited to emergencies, illness, and/or death in family. Please contact me early regarding any disability you feel may interfere with your ability to fully participate in lab activities so we can make arrangements.

Lab activities (including field trips) will often include sketches and notes (in pencil or permanent ink, do not use ball point pens), so you will need to purchase a bound notebook (spiral notebooks are not acceptable). Your grade will not be based on artistic ability but rather on accuracy and thoroughness. Working together on lab activities is fine, however, each person must turn in their own work. If I receive identical works, neither will receive credit.

The lab is worth 200 points and is included in the grade you get for the class as a whole (lecture + lab). See Lecture Syllabus for grade scale:

Here is the breakdown for the 200 points:

Field Participation (3 @ 10 points each) 30 points

Notebook 40 points

Quizzes (6 @ 5 points each): 30 points

Aquarium Report: 25 points

Lab Practical (cumulative) 75 points

TOTAL 200 points


Field Trips:

         Participation in the day trips (Jemez, Rio Grande, and ABQ Aquarium) is required. Not only do you have to show up, but you also will need to get involved in the work to earn full credit. Field activities will include fish sampling, collecting, and sorting, as well as taking field notes on the fish data and habitat. The water is cold this time of year, so I recommend purchasing waders.


         Electroshocking REQUIRES that you wear waders when in the water.


         The Spring Break field trip will involve driving to and sampling some of the lakes and drainages of Oklahoma. Since it takes place during break, attendance is not mandatory and there will be no grade associated with the field trip other than the follow-up work in lab. I will provide you with more details about the trip, as we get closer to going.




Lab Schedule - Spring 2006 (may be modified as we proceed)


Week 1


Introduction to lab and Ichthyology - content, grading, syllabus Tour of Division of Fishes (Lex Snyder, Collections Manager)


Week 2


Basic Anatomy I: external


Week 3


Basic Anatomy II: internal

QUIZ 1: External Anatomy

Week 4


Introduction to Systematics and Taxonomy: dichotomous keys; introduction to field methods; field notes

QUIZ 2: Internal Anatomy

Week 5


Field Trip to Aquarium

Report due 22 Feb

Week 6


Chondrichthyes and Ancestral Fishes: identification and distribution of some major families

Aquarium Report Due

Week 7


Osteichthyes I: identification and distribution of some major families

QUIZ 3: Chondrichthyes and Ancestral Fishes

Week 8


Fishes of Oklahoma: identification

QUIZ 4: Osteichthyes

Week 9


Oklahoma Field Trip - Spring Break


Week 10


Osteichthyes II: identification and distribution of some major families


Week 11


Fishes of New Mexico Part I: identification

QUIZ 5: Fishes of Oklahoma, Osteichthyes

Week 12


Field Trip


Week 13


Field Trip


Week 14


Fishes of New Mexico Part II: identification, enumeration, and morphometrics of fishes from trips

QUIZ 6: Fishes of New Mexico, Osteichthyes

Week 15


Larval Fishes: Howard Brandenburg (MSB) Field methods for larval and juvenile fishes


Week 16


Lab Practical Exam

Notebooks Due