Freshwater hydra

Freshwater hydra

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Caption: Macrophotograph of a freshwater coelenterate polyp, Hydra vulgaris attached at its base to a water weed. The anterior of hydra is a mouth surrounded by a number of tentacles depending on the species. The tentacles are used to capture food such as small water fleas and algal cells floating past on the current. The food is past to the mouth. Waste is also eliminated through the mouth. In good feeding conditions hydra reproduces asexually by budding off daughter polyps. In poor conditions sexual cells are released into the water and fertilization occurs. Hydra is remarkable in its ability to regenerate itself when damaged. Magnification: x3 at 35mm size.

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Keywords: animal, coelenterate, freshwater, hydra vulgaris, invertebrate, invertebrates, nature, regenerative ability, wildlife, zoology

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