This project intends to investigate the quality and health of water resources in and around the quarry using members of the class Odonata as bio-indicators. Quarry operations impact the environment in several ways, for instance quarry dust can change the chemistry of water resources by dissolving in them. Noise and mechanical shakes from blasting disturbs biodiversity and even humans who live nearby.

 

Dust from quarry activities has been known to be the cause of many respiratory diseases and conditions. Effects to biodiversity occurs in diverse ways, it can disturb plant growth by settling on leaves and hinder photosynthesis thus disrupting food chains. It can also settle in water bodies and cause pollution.

Members of the Order Odonata comprising the dragonflies and Damselflies are a group of carnivorous insects. They are known to be aquatic or semi-aquatic as juveniles and are mostly found near water bodies. Odonates are very sensitive to changes in their habitat thus their use as bioindicatros of water and land quality.
Project activities include;
1. Capture and identification of Odonates using an aerial net and collection of larvae or nymphs using a hand net. Diversity indices would be calculated and inferences drawn.
2. Measurement of Physicochemical and chemical properties of the water bodies and comparison with World Health Organization (WHO) standards.

Last post for the memories we share

We present to you in this post the rest of the fauna components we encountered at the site. it rather unfortunate some of the insects are such fast fliers they were no where insight by the time we got our cameras out. Enjoy and share our memories with us.

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30Sep

Farewell but not good bye

After six months of project implementation, we have come to the end of our journey on this run. But this is not the end for biodiversity, its just the beginning of more work to safeguard our biological resources. What has team_Odonata done? What have we achieved? What were the challenges and our strategies to surmount them? Please read on...

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30Sep

Acisoma inflatum

These were only found at site B where there was a shallow freshwater pool with emergent grasses. They are habitat specific and their presence is indicative of vegetation cover.

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30Sep

quarry fauna (Caterpillar)

We present to you other faunal components we encountered at the site during our surveys.

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30Sep

Drawing the curtain

With one more day to go, we are making finishing touches to our report. Its the turn of the team leader, Emmanuel N. A. Taye to do final review and editing.

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30Sep

Good news for biodiversity, they survive

Benthos refers to the bottom or substrate of water bodies and can also be used to refer to organisms in this environment. Exuviae refers to the exoskeleton of Odonates' larvae that is shed after emergence into adults. We sampled the bottom of the three water bodies for nymphs/larvae of Dragonflies and damselflies and examined emergent plants and rocks as well as the ground around the water bodies for exuviae.

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30Sep

Species diversity indices (measures of species richness and abundance)

A diversity index is a quantitative measure that reflects how many different types (such as species) there are in a dataset, and simultaneously takes into account how evenly the basic entities (such as individuals) are distributed among those types. We looked at both species richness, relative abundance and some diversity indices for all three sites. Site A had the highest species richness and abundance but lowest evenness. Refer to attached image for index figures.

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30Sep

The Dragonflies and damselflies were there, what do they tell us.

18 species of Dragonflies and Damselflies were encountered during the study at the three sites. Surprisingly the quarry site had the highest species richness, which is most likely as a result of change in the landscape which has produced or created many micro-habitats for several species to coexist in their own niches. The species encountered were all of Least Concern(LC) according to the IUCN redlist. however these play crucial ecological roles and must not be allowed to go locally extinct....

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30Sep

Data analysis

With just a day to the end of the competition, we are bringing you that last parts of our collected data and the implications on water quality and then effects on biodiversity. Tests run on the water samples from the three sites showed healthy water systems. Implying minimal impacts from the quarry. the heavy metals which are toxic were in trace amounts and pose no threat, however due to the biological phenomenon of bio-accumulation, care must be taken to keep this at the barest minimum....

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30Sep

Cadmium (Cd) is absent

Water analysis show that Cadmium, a toxic metal, is absent from all three sampling sites

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22Aug

Back from the laboratory

Water samples from the three sampling sites were tested for presence and concentration of heavy metals with the Pinnacle 900T Atomic absorption spectrophotometer.

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15Aug

I present to you the WHIRLIGIG BEETLES (Family : Gyrinidae)

This whirligig beetle was found floating passively in the clear waters of the temporary pool under the quarry cliff. It dived quickly under the water the moment we got near, they are very sensitive to movements in the water column, this makes them efficient feeders as they employ this sensitivity to locate prey.

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05Aug

Strike a pose for biodiversity

Harnessing grassroots support through awareness creation. Educating the child is key to the future of biodiversity.

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04Aug

PREDATOR-PREY; THE DAMSELFLY LARVA AND MOSQUITO LARVA

Astounding revelation!!! Testing hypothesis: harvesting mosquito larvae to feed dragonfly and damselfly larvae.

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03Aug

Predator-Prey; the damselfly larva and mosquito larva

Astounding revelation!!! Testing hypothesis: harvesting mosquito larvae to feed damselfly larvae.

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03Aug

Day of sorrow

This dragonfly larva I have been keeping for some time died today. Just a few more days to emerge as an adult dragonfly.

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02Aug

IS IT WORTH IT?

The old adage "When the last tree dies the last man dies" is true in several regards today. With the direction industrialization and modernization are gong, there would be nothing but land and water on the earth in the not too distant future. In this post I share my thoughts on biodiversity conservation and how its importance cannot and should not be overlooked.

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01Aug

Time with the Jury: four (4) months of biodiversity work, the way forward.

Such an encounter it was meeting with the Jury. The questions, comments and suggestions have drawn our attention to issues relating to data collection and field observations. More than anything team Odonata has been challenged and encouraged to see this project through.

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29Jul

Attack of the Leeches (Hirudinea)

These thirsty blood suckers latched their suckers onto my water quality kit the moment it hit the water. Am I glad I wore wellington boots before wading!!!

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28Jul

Spot the dragonfly

In these pictures is a dragonfly (female Bradynopgya strachani) resting on a worn tractor tire. Look closely at the first picture to see if you can spot the dragonfly, then look at the other pictures to see if you got the position of the dragonfly correct. Can you spot the dragonfly in the first picture? Give it a try!

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27Jul

More laboratory work, test for Ammoniacal NItrigen (NH3-N)

Ammoniacal nitrogen (NH3-N), is a measure for the amount of ammonia, a toxic pollutant often found in landfill leachate and in waste products, such as sewage, liquid manure and other liquid organic waste products. It can also be used as a measure of the health of water in natural bodies such as rivers or lakes, or in man made water reservoirs. Ammonia can directly poison humans and upset the equilibrium of water systems. Click on Read More for more details of laboratory test process.

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26Jul

Meet Bradynopgya strachani

This beauty is one of the commonest species of dragonflies in Ghana. Just like most other dragonflies, these are masters of camouflage.

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21Jul

Test for Phosphates (PO4-3)

Our next analysis is the test for phosphates (PO4-3).

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12Jul

Meet Hoplobatrachus occipitalis (Crown Bullfrog) {invasive}

We observed several members of the crown bullfrog (Hoplobatrachus occipitalis) at various stages of development in a temporary standing pool in the quarry.

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07Jul

Test for Nitrate Nitrogen (NO3-N)

The first test we carried out is the test for Nitrate Nitrogen (NO3-N) in the water samples we brought from the field. Interesting procedure and very interesting results. Click on READ MORE to find out.

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05Jul

Hitting the laboratory

Today is dedicated to laboratory analysis of water samples before next field visit.

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05Jul

Spreading the gospel of conservation

Last Wednesday during a toastmasters meeting, I was privileged to give a presentation on the use of dragonflies and damselflies as tools for environmental monitoring. It was a thrill seeing the eager looks on the attentive faces of those gathered and I knew there and then that there are many out there who are passionate about nature and the environment who would readily and gladly get on board to rally for nature conservation if they knew enough. I believe awareness come with change so I am...

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04Jul

Wherever there's water!

The stars of the show (dragonflies and Damselflies) are usually found where there's water even very shallow drain water. If they are there, there we will be.

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04Jul

Rains: the life source of shallow pools

With the onset of the rains, some previously dry places in and around the quarry have become inundated with water and life has resumed for some organisms such as the water boatman, frogs, many aquatic insects and some gastropods. Obviously our stars the dragonflies and damselflies were present.

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30Jun

Collection of water quality data

We took water quality data in the quarry using the Horiba U-5000G.

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27Jun

Excited community stakeholder

This man was full of smiles after hearing how dragonflies and damselflies can be used to tell the quality of water or level of pollution.

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24Jun

Voluntering to gain work experience

Today I volunteered to help a PhD candidate in the person of Mr. Daniel Acquah-Lamptey who has come to Ghana from Germany to collect data for his research. This I did in order to gain some experience to help me with my own work.

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22Jun

Meet the stars

This research revolves around dragonflies and damselflies (our stars) for many reasons. first of all research has shown that they are a cheap means of assessing environmental health and secondly because they are such lovely creatures. We will explore in the updates of the following weeks the dragonflies and damselflies found at the Beposo aggregate quarry. site back, grab some popcorn and relax as we go on this educative and informative journey. We begin with the Lucia Widow.

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14Jun

Water is of necessity

Almost all animals depend on water for survival. Many lay their eggs in water, hunt for food in water and require water to regulate their body temperature (thermoregulation).

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14Jun

temporary shallow pools

Temporary shallow pools are thriving ecosystems on their own.

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14Jun

STUDY DESIGN

This study comprises an Odonata survey as well as both insitu and exsitu water quality measurements. It's all about water being life not just for humans but also for biodiversity and we must keep our water resources clean and not polluted. Take a peek inside to read more.

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08Jun

Bare land, slopes, runoff, chemical and sediment load.

Removal of layers of soil leave the land bare and vulnerable to erosion. Rain water washes part of the remaining surface soil into low lying areas where water bodies are found.

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07Jun

Exploring Beposo aggregate quarry

For a successful project execution, adequate planning is of utmost importance. Knowledge of what you are working with helps plan better and save time and effort in the field.

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07Jun

Site orientation

Safety is a priority! Strong and healthy in: strong and healthy out!

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06May
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