Microorganisms - please help identify

About microscopic forms of life, including Bacteria, Archea, protozoans, algae and fungi. Topics relating to viruses, viroids and prions also belong here.

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Microorganisms - please help identify

Post by chambershex » Mon Dec 31, 2007 2:28 am

Hey guys,

I'm new to all this microbiology stuff and just wanted to know if someone could help me identify what these microorganisms are that were present in some murky water obtained from a bird bath.

The first organism was taken at 400x, and seemed to rock backwards and forwards on the spot.

The second organism, taken at 100x, appears to be a paramecium, I just wanted to clarify this. Notice the cilia at both ends. Its action was quick swimming through the water, and occasionally spinning in small circles.

The last organism is taken at 400x, and although hidden in the image it appears to have a flagellum-like appendage which is anchored to the surface. Its action consisted of flowing water through its mouth, and then occasionally recoiling quickly into a sphere shape. It would then extent its mouth region outwards and begin the water flowing cycle again. From what I could see it appeared to be feeding on bacteria.

Sorry for the poor image quality, my camera and software is budget.

Thanks a lot for any help!
para1.jpg (128.09 KiB) Viewed 3503 times

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Post by LittleBeaver » Fri Jan 25, 2008 9:25 pm

The first one looks like a radiolarian because of its spherical shape and what appears to be spines and axopodia. Paramecium is usually longer/more slender with the entire body surface being ciliated…so the second one could possibly be stylonychia or euplotes, also members of the ciliates. The last one almost sounds like a rotifer (or Stentor coeruleus if was trumpet shaped when extended) by the way you’ve described its action but sometimes it can be difficult to tell just by looking at a still photo.

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