Field Identification of Woodlice

There are around 40 different species of woodlice occurring naturally outdoors in the British Isles and despite being an invertebrate that commonly crosses paths with people, relatively few people know how to identify the different species we share our homes and gardens with. Join our tutor in the field to search for, find and discuss the identification features of a variety of UK woodlice species that can be identified in the field.

Learn about the different body shapes of woodlice to help you tell your rollers from your clampers, and which features to look at in the field. For example, the pleopodal lungs are a feature that is extremely difficult to see in preserved specimens but can be seen on live specimens with a hand lens. We will cover the ‘Famous Five’ woodlice species that are common and widespread, including the Common Shiny Woodlouse (Philoscia muscorum), Common Rough Woodlouse (Porcellio scaber),  Common Smooth Woodlouse (Oniscus asellus), Common Pygmy Woodlouse (Trichoniscus pusillus) and the Common Pill Woodlouse (Armadillidium vulgare). We’ll then look at other distinctive species such as the Rosy Woodlouse (Androniscus dentiger) and the Ant Woodlouse (Platyarthrus hoffmannseggi) that lives in an nests and has no eyes!

This course marries together the use of classroom-led learning and outside learning opportunities led by a specialist tutor to give learners the skills to be able to identify distinctive species of woodlice in the field.

What will be covered during this course?

  • An introduction to woodlice classification and how their morphology and ecology are interconnected.
  • Identification of distinctive species of woodlice using a hand lens and field characters.
  • Support from a specialist woodlice tutor when practicing field identification techniques.
  • Guidance on how to submit woodlice records.

How to Apply

Please refer to our website for more information about the course and to book your place.

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Key Information

Start date:

23rd November 2021 at 10:00am




FSC BioLinks




Biodiversity, Biology, Conservation, Ecology, Nature & Wildlife


FSC Bishops Wood, United Kingdom

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