Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Singapore Protozoans Part 2 - A Murky Pond

After looking at today's sample (from a small pond in the botany garden at NUS) under the microscope I think I might hesitate to stick my hands into warm murky pond water again. It's absolutely crawling with bacteria, and to illustrate what I mean by crawling I've even got a video:

On the bright side, that means there's plenty of protists grazing on all these bacteria, including lots of small bacterivorous ciliates, and gliding euglenids (photo below). I really think that they look like twisted potato chips, don't you too? Diatom and dinoflagellates were common, but I saw more empty tests and frustules than living cells.

gliding potato chip euglenid 2-01gliding potato chip euglenid 3-02 P1030837
"Potato chip" euglenids with flagellum that points in the direction of motion.

One of the highlights was a big amoeba which had really awesome cytoplasmic streaming and which moved by blebbing outwards in a way which is easier to show than to describe in words.

See the full set of photographs on Flickr. [Update 6/9/11 - I've moved all the photos to my new protist website and the Flickr album is no longer available.]

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