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Aulosphaera radiolarian, SEM

Aulosphaera radiolarian, SEM

C038/7030

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Credit

EYE OF SCIENCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EYE OF SCIENCE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Aulosphaera radiolarian,. Scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of the shell or test of the radiolarian Aulosphaera elegantissima. Radiolaria are single-celled protozoans that are found in marine plankton. This radiolarian has an intricate silicate skeleton with pores through which it projects pseudopodia of protoplasm. As the animal floats in ocean currents the pseudopodia trap food particles on which the radiolarian feeds. As zooplankton in the ocean their skeletal remains form siliceous ooze on the seabed. They evolve rapidly into new species, and are an important diagnostic fossil. Magnification: x65 when printed at 10 centimetres across.

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