John Yarwell Compound Microscope (circa 1687)


Galleria
License Info
Image Use
Custom Photos
Partners
Site Info
Contact Us
Publications
Home

The Galleries:

Photo Gallery
Silicon Zoo
Pharmaceuticals
Chip Shots
Phytochemicals
DNA Gallery
Microscapes
Vitamins
Amino Acids
Birthstones
Religion Collection
Pesticides
BeerShots
Cocktail Collection
Screen Savers
Win Wallpaper
Mac Wallpaper
Movie Gallery
 

Wim van Egmond

Brachionus Parasite

Brachionus is a genus of rotifers that reside in a variety of habitats, but are perhaps most often found in hard water lakes. The tiny animals, which only grow about 300 micrometers long, are encased in transparent shells called loricas.

Brachionus Parasite

As rotifers, Brachionus organisms feature ciliated coronas that appear similar to turning wheels when they are in motion. Individuals are also equipped with specialized organ systems, a fully formed digestive tract, and a foot that contains pedal glands. Sticky secretions produced by the glands enable the rotifers to temporarily attach to substrates. Sometimes, once they are anchored to a surface, the organisms will release a length of filament and will locate themselves at the end of it with their hairlike cilia extended for feeding. The shells of Brachionus species and other loricate rotifers are primarily protective structures and may be variously ornamented, sometimes exhibiting spines or other protrusions. In fact, examination of lorica markings is often extremely helpful in species identification.

Despite their miniscule dimensions, the rotifers in the genus Brachionus have found a notable use in modern society. Often considered the most important living prey of fish larvae, the diminutive animals are heavily utilized in aquaculture. Their high nutritional value and ease of cultivation have inspired numerous hatchery managers to ensure their continual production. Their importance is further emphasized by the numerous studies that have been carried out to determine the protocols that most greatly contribute to high densities of rotifer populations. Brachionus species are, however, sometimes alternatively utilized as bioassay organisms or pollution indicators, rather than as a link in the commercial food chain.

BACK TO WIM VAN EGMOND GALLERY

Questions or comments? Send us an email.
Photomicrographs are © 2000-2013 by Wim van Egmond.
All Rights Reserved under copyright law.
© 1995-2013 by Michael W. Davidson and The Florida State University. All Rights Reserved. No images, graphics, software, scripts, or applets may be reproduced or used in any manner without permission from the copyright holders. Use of this website means you agree to all of the Legal Terms and Conditions set forth by the owners.
This website is maintained by our
Graphics & Web Programming Team
in collaboration with Optical Microscopy at the
National High Magnetic Field Laboratory.
Last modification: Sunday, Sep 14, 2003 at 11:38 AM
Access Count Since September 15, 2003: 13282
Microscopes provided by:
Visit the Nikon website. Visit the Olympus Microscopy Resource Center website.