WIM VAN EGMOND / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY WIM VAN EGMOND / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Macro photograph of hat-thrower, or dung canon, fungus (Pilobolus crystallinus). This fungus is found on herbivore manure. Although the stalk is only a few millimetres in length, the black sporangium can be shot 2 meters away from the manure. The sporangium has to be eaten and pass through the digestive system of a herbivore in order to germinate again in fresh manure. The base of the vesicle that shoots the sporangium is light sensitive and acts as a lens so it can shoot towards the light. Magnification: x21 when printed 10 centimetre tall.
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