Freshwater bacteria, SEM

Freshwater bacteria, SEM

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Credit: MARTIN OEGGERLI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Freshwater bacteria (Caulobacter crescentus), coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM). This Gram-negative bacterium is found in fresh water, soil, and sea water. Caulobacter has two very different forms: a mobile ('swarmer') cell with a hair-like flagellum for swimming, and an immobile ('stalked') cell with an adhesive stalk that enables it to attach to surfaces (seen here). Only stalked cells are able to reproduce, which they do by replication. Swarmer cells are able to search for nutrients in nutrient-poor environments. They can also differentiate into stalked cells as they mature.

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Keywords: adhesive, aquatic, attached, bacteria, bacterial, bacteriology, bacterium, caulobacter crescentus, cell biology, coloured, false-coloured, freshwater, hydrology, immobile, marine, microbiological, microbiology, nature, research, scanning electron micrograph, scanning electron microscope, sem, stalk, stalked, water

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