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Slime mould spore. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of empty spores (white) of a slime mould (Lycogala sp.). They have produced single-celled myxamoebae (not seen). Each free-living myxamoeba is haploid (has one set of chromosomes). In this plasmodial species, pairs of myxamoebae fuse and grow into a plasmodium, a single, multinucleated cell that can grow to be centimetres across. The plasmodium is slimy and often colourful. It can move slowly, feeding on bacteria and fungi, before producing fruiting bodies that release spores. Slime moulds are not fungi, but are classified as a separate group. Magnification: x3250 at 6x7cm size.
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