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Scanning electron micrograph of Milnesiumsp.
A new species for North America for this genus.

Welcome to the Species Distribution Project. This project was designed by a high school biology teacher and a university biology professor as a way to encourage students to integrate laboratory skills and scientific discovery in an active research project. We also hope to foster a working relationship between research scientists at Illinois Wesleyan University and secondary schools across the nation.

We are excited about the possibility of working with you to discover new information about tardigrades. This project involves examination of live specimens, scientific protocols, and the world wide web to locate, describe, and record the distribution of species of tardigrades in the student's hometown

In the Distribution Project section of the the web site we have included information to assists you in your hunt for water bears. Use the Site Navigation to follow methods for finding and identifying tardigrades. The Key and Glossary pages will provide information on the structure of tardigrades. We have also included a Lesson Plan for Biology teachers.

Primary objectives of this project are to assist students with an essential part of a the educational experience----hands-on experience and to encourage a deeper understanding of the scientific process and a greater interest in learning.

The scientific goal of the project is to map the United States distribution of the new species water bear recently found in Bloomington, Illinois. Students exploring their own communities can send sample to us for confirmation and have their contributions added to our distribution map.

Website Authors: Karen Lindahl and Professor Susie Balser in affiliation
with Illinois Wesleyan University. Last revised 1 Oct. 1999.