While looking through a bit of floating pond debris, I encountered this enormous amoeba. I did a quick estimate and concluded that this cell was around 700 – 1000 micrometers long (for reference, 1000 micrometers = 1 millimeter, 1/10th of a centimeter). This amoeba is likely multinucleate and from the genus Pelomyxa or Chaos.
This work was found squirming in and about some filaments of Spirogyra (the blob you see in the photo is just some adhesive for attaching the cover slip to a slide). I could not tell which end was the head or posterior.
I honestly think this is one of the nicest photos I’ve taken.
- A nucleus can be seen toward the center of the cell.
Lacrymaria is a Haptorian ciliate with an extendable “trunk” that can be used to capture small prey (I observed this cell capturing and ingesting a smaller ciliate). In the featured photo, you can see how long the trunk can extend (some of which is off-screen). In the photo below, the trunk is completely retracted, giving the ciliate a scrunched appearance.
Vampyrella is a small-medium sized amoeba that feeds primarily on algal filaments. It first bores a hole in the cell wall, and then proceeds to suck out the cytoplasm.
Vampyrella is the small orange-ish blob in the center of the photo.
Within the microaquarium, I found only one of these Euplotes-like hypotrichs.
Rather than remaining solitary, some flagellates will form colonies. A classic example of this are the Synura Uvella featured in the photo above. The genus Synura is included among the Chrysophyta (Golden Algae). Clearly seen extending from one cell is a single flagellum.
Please be aware the the Chrysophyta are NOT an actual taxon; the genus Synura is included in the class Synurophyceae
With the help of a microaquarium, I was able to capture and observe these two Ostracods. For more on Ostracods, view earlier posts.
Gastrotricha is a phylum of multicellular, microscopic, pseudocoelemate animals. They are often ciliated, and some possess small spines.