Taxonomic Identification Service:

AEL has provided aquatic taxonomic identification services to Canadian and US federal agencies, provincial and state governments, NGOs, Ontario conservation authorities and private sector clients since 1983.  Its laboratory is fully equipped to process samples, identify all freshwater organisms, photograph specimens, and produce digital reports.  An extensive library is available with over 120 taxonomic books and 6 cabinet drawers of up-to-date taxonomic publications. Finally, the company’s most valuable resource is its in-house reference collection of benthic macroinvertebrates that currently contains over 1.8 million identified specimens from more than 10,000 samples.

Dr. Ron Griffiths is the Principal Taxonomist with over 45 years of experience identifying freshwater organisms. In the Great Lakes Basin, he has identified benthos from all Great Lakes and connecting waters and inland waters from the Ottawa River in the east to Rainy River in the west and Frenchman’s Creek in the south to Moose River in the north.  He also has extensive collections from eastern Africa, southeastern Asia, New Zealand and coastal mountains of North America.

In recognition of his biological research in Kenya, and environmental outreach activities in Nairobi, Dr. Pat McCafferty of Purdue University named the Kenyan baetid mayfly: Acanthiops griffithsi, after him.  In total, he has contributed to the discovery of 5 African mayfly species.  As a recognized taxonomic expert, he has conducted benthic taxonomic workshops (introductory and expert) in USA, Canada, Thailand, Kenya and New Zealand. Furthermore, he has authored a course textbook on water quality bioassessment for Niagara College, published over 2 dozen articles in the primary literature, written more than 50 bioassessment reports, and presented almost 100 studies at scientific conferences around the world.

Currently, Ron is a taxonomist on an US-EPA project to genetically bar code all benthic macroinvertebrate species in the Great Lakes with colleagues at Buffalo State University, as well as examining the benthic community changes in Lake St. Clair since early 1990s, assessing the impact of silts on the benthos of an Oregon river, documenting the distribution of baetid mayflies across southern Ontario, and assessing the impact of fish pens on benthic community structure in Lake Huron.

Aquatic Ecostudies Limited

287 Miller Road, Dutton, Ontario  N0L-1J0

Phone: 519-762-2057


Providing Identifications for:

  1. Benthic Invertebrates

  2. Aquatic Plants

  3. Periphyton

  4. Zooplankton

  5. Cyanobacteria

  6. Phytoplankton


Lakes, Watercourses & Wetlands