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Bell Animalcules
March 17, 2009
11:56 am
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Andreas Werth
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Forum Posts: 14
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November 25, 2008
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Hi,
haven´t been here for a while /blush.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=":blush:" border="0" alt="blush.gif" /> , but shot some photos last weekend, which I would like to share with you. One of my bigger tanks is waiting for a complete cleaning job, nothing inside except some wood, plants, snails, sand. I discovered some colonies of bell animalcules, and decided to photograph them:

20090317-006854_800.jpgImage Enlarger

I guess one can estimate their size: they are "sitting" on a single hair algue.
The picture above is a heavy cropped part of a photo made with a 60mm macro lens at 1:1 magnification. Since one can´t see very much details of these ciliates, I tried to get closer, without using a microscope. (I am actually looking for a good one.)

Here we can see them at about 6.3:1 (using extension tubes, bellows, macro lens and achromatic close-up lens)

20090315-006758_800s.jpgImage Enlarger

On closer inspection you may notice Stentor on the upper left side and in the middle of the photo.

Below is even closer, maybe a little more than 10:1. That means less than 2mm real life length on the APS-C sensor of my Canon EOS 40D.

20090315-006768_800s.jpgImage Enlarger

It is not as good as it could be photographed with a stereo microscope, but one can see some interesting details. Hope you like it, also if it is some unusual stuff for a fish board.

Best wishes,
andreas

March 17, 2009
12:47 pm
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Matt
Málaga, Spain
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June 13, 2011
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Stunning macro work Andreas the stalks of the individual 'bells' are clearly visible. Cool 'trumpets' in the second image too. /cool.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid="B)" border="0" alt="cool.gif" /> Great to see you around again. /wink.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=";)" border="0" alt="wink.gif" />

Cake or death?
March 17, 2009
1:23 pm
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thelizzious
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September 7, 2008
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Hi Andreas. Can you please explain to a layer as me, what these creatures are and what there job is in the water? Also, the last two pictures somehow remind me of the milky way /wink.gif" style="vertical-align:middle" emoid=";)" border="0" alt="wink.gif" />

March 17, 2009
9:04 pm
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Andreas Werth
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Forum Posts: 14
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November 25, 2008
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Hi Matt and Lizz,
thanks for your comments!

Lizz, I wouldn´t talk about a job, they are just there - like we humans. They are widespread in freshwater and you will find them in almost every old aquarium filter sponge.

Here you can read some more about Vorticella, although I´m not sure whether this is the correct genus. There are even some movies.

March 17, 2009
10:50 pm
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thelizzious
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September 7, 2008
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Trumpets, Matt? I thought they look like tiny bells.
Thanks, Andreas. I asked this because they looked familiar to something I have discovered in my tropical tank. At first (with the bare eye) I thought they were some kind of eggs. But they didn't hatch, they keep appearing, so I thought that there must be some sort of symbiosis between the bells and something in the tank. It was nice to read about the old stuff like cells and nucleaus again, I always loved biology.

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