Hydra viridissima

Hydra viridissima

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Credit: M.I. WALKER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Light micrograph of the freshwater coelenterate polyp Hydra viridissima. The three small bumps on its surface are 'testes', swellings in the ectoderm within which sperm cells are formed. In poor feeding conditions hydra release sexual cells into the water for fertilization to occur. In good conditions they reproduce asexually by budding off daughter polyps (one is visible here near the top). The mouth of this species is surrounded by eight tentacles, used to capture food such as small water fleas and algal cells which float past on the current. Food is passed to the mouth for ingestion. Waste is also eliminated via the mouth. Magnification: x10 at 35mm size.

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

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