Coloured SEM of radiolarian, Saturnis planetus

Coloured SEM of radiolarian, Saturnis planetus

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Credit: MANFRED KAGE/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Radiolarian. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of the shell (skeleton) of Saturnulus planetus, a type of radiolarian protozoan. Radiolarians build these hard, mineral skeletons around themselves as they float in warm seas with other plankton. They extend their protoplasm as pseudopodia (false feet) through pores in the shell to feed on tiny organisms. The radiolarians can change their density in order to vary their depth. Large numbers of radiolarian skeletons litter the sea bed; these become fossilised to form minerals like flint. Magnification: x536 at 6x7cm size.

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Keywords: animal, flint, invertebrate, invertebrates, nature, origin, plankton, protozoa, protozoan, radiolaria, radiolarian, rock, saturnulus planet, saturnulus planetus, test, wildlife, zoology

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