Candy and Cichlids: Exploring Dichotomous Keys

This lesson allows students to take on the role of real scientists, as they identify species from one another. Dr. Reade Robert’s lab research focuses especially on Lake Malawi Cichlids, which are some of the most colorful of the Family Cichlidae. There are more than 1,600 described species of cichlids, worldwide, and they comprise one of the largest vertebrae families on Earth. In Lake Malawi alone, there are at least 700 species, with more being discovered and estimates of as many as 1,000 species in the lake. It is the ninth largest lake in the world and has more species of fish than any other lake.

Author: Linda Dion

View the lesson and supporting materials here.