Ecology, Sediment and Soil Laboratories

These laboratories are where staff and students process and analyse freshwater macroinvertebrates, plant samples, soil samples and sediments collected from fluvial, glacial and aeolian environments.

The Sediment and Soils Laboratory contains splitting, sieving and analysis equipment for characterising the physical and basic chemical properties of sediment and soil samples.

There is a Eijkelkamp sand box for Pf (soil moisture) determination and some bespoke machines, including a device for simulating grain abrasion in aeolian environments.

The Ecology Laboratory contains a suite of high specification microscopes suitable for species level invertebrate identification supported by a library of identification guides.

There is also cold storage, a leaf area analysis system, a Retsch ball mill for vegetation sample preparation, aquaria for invertebrate observation and wet sieving facilities suitable for processing ecological samples.

Processing Ecological Samples

Postgraduate Researcher, James White, sorting a freshwater macroinvertebrate sample.

Analysing Sediment Samples

Fine wind-blown sediments (from Australian desert dunes) caught on filter papers, drying prior to analysis.


Analytical sieves used to sort coarse-grained soils and sediments.