Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Egmond, Wim Van [internet]. [cited 2009 Nov 24] Available from http://www.microscopy-uk.org.uk/mag/indexmag.html?http://www.microscopy-uk.org.uk/mag/wimsmall/rotidr.html

Baqia, Guruswamy, Liu, and Rizki [internet]. [updated 1 May 2000] Berkley UCMP [cited 2009 Nov 24] Available from http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/phyla/rotifera/rotifera.html

Wallace, Robert Lee [internet]. [updated 2009] Ripon, Wisconsin: Ripon College, Deaprtment of Biology [cited 2009 Nov 24] Available from http://icb.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/42/3/660

Biodiversity occurrence data provided by: Australian Antarctic Data Centre: Rotifers of Macguarie Island (accessed through GBIF Data Portal, www. gbif.net, 2009-11-24)

K.L. Shulz. [Internet]. Syracuse, NY: SUNY College of Environmental Sciences and Forestry, Department of Environmental and Forest Biology [cited 2009 Nov 24] Available from http://www.esf.edu/efb/schulz/Limnology/ZoopDiversity.html

Donner, Joseph. Rotifers p. 10-13.

Prescott, G.W. [1954] How to Know The Freshwater Algae Dubuque, Iowa,:W.C. Brown Co.

Prescott, G.W. [1962] Algae of the Western Great Lakes Area. Dubugue, Iowa: W.C. Brown Co.

Patterson, G.W. Drawings by S. Hedley. [1996] Free-living Freshwater Protozoa--a Colour Guide. New York (NY): John Wiley & Sons.

Smith, Douglas Grant [2001] Pennak’s Freshwater Invertebrates of the United States. 4th ed. New York (NY): John Wiley & Sons. p. 129-191.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Final Week November 9, 2009

The aquarium really has not changed all that much since last week, the major difference was the drop in water level and a dramatic increase in algae. Shown left are some pictures of the algae, mostly showing green algae (the "pods" are called Cosmarian) and diatoms (How to Know The Freshwater Algae by G.W.Prescott). The other algae was not identifiable. The moss is mostly dead with little new growth while the carnivorous plant's growth has slowed, but it is still thriving. Another Midge larvae has appeared in the aquarium, it was making a sort of cocoon, perhaps, out of sediment. A juvenile Rotifer was photographed (shown right, the pod with a clear membrane, note the mandible shape on it) (Rotifers by Joseph Donner). Another creature was seen (yellow sphere) but was not identified. I also managed to get a clear photograph of another organism who was previously identified in one of my videos (yellow sphere with lines coming out from it called an Acanthocystis). Finally, a Arscella was also photographed (center) (Free Living Freshwater Protozoa: a Colour Guide by D.J. Patterson).

Bibliography: (used in all 5 blogs)
Free LIving Freshwater Protozoa: a Colour Guide by D.J. Patterson

Algae of the Western Great Lakes Area by G.W. Prescott

Rotifers by Joseph Donner

How to Know the Freshwater Algae by G.W. Prescott

Pennak's Freshawater Invertebrates of the United States by Douglas Grant Smith

Saturday, November 7, 2009

November 2, 2009 week 4
Today I looked at my micro aquarium through a dissecting microscope and got an interesting new look at my aquarium. It allowed me to look at my aquarium in a 3-D perspective and get a bit of a better look at some things, however it did have one flaw, the zoom seemed to be that of maybe a 2X. I saw that there was an odd growth in the area of the aquarium where the majority of the plant material is, it kind of formed a half pipe of a brown stringy plant material. Other than that, there was nothing of importance to report on. The moss however, seemed to be dying off for the most part while a few new growths are sprouting out. The carnivorous plant on the other hand is growing quit large, it had a branch of it extend to the other side of the aquarium. The pods also are branching out, meaning that they have "branches" growing outward from the pods. The food pellet was completely gone, there was no trae of it that I could find. There are less bacteria, excluding cyanobacteria which is showing up quit a bit, more diatoms and other alga, and there are less halteria but more rotifers. Panerian (flat worms) have shown up in a small corner in the upper-right hand corner where sediment has randomly appeared, several rotifers can be found there and in the opposite corner where growth from the carnivorous plant has extended. Above center: copepod, diatoms. Above left: several alga including a volvox (Algae of the Western Great Lakes Area-G.W. Prescott) and below is a rotifer.--> assuming the blog makes them appear correctly.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

October 26, 2009-week 3
Today is 1 week after the edition of the food pellet into my micro aquarium. Unfortunately in my last post I failed to mention the names of the 2 plant that were added into the aquarium, the moss (plant A) is Amblystegium varium and the insect eating plant (plant B) is a carnivorous plant obtained from the Hesler greenhouse on UTK's campus (http://www.botany1112009.blogspot.com/). Nothing much seems to have occurred with these two plants, but what is interesting are the microorganisms. Their numbers seemed to have increases ten fold, most of them are seen around the food pellet which can be observed in my video. Most seem to be Amoeba, bacteria of various sorts, and Halteria; which seem to feed on the bacteria. One of the organisms (lacymaria) which have been newly sighted apparently can stretch its' neck to seven times its' body length (_Free Living Fresh Water Protozoa: A Colour Guide_ by D.J. Patterson). Their are large colonies of bacteria in and around the food pellet that may be feeding on it. There are mysterious tentacle like objects moving on one side of the food pellet (top side) that may be Cyanobacteria, but lack the coloration of them and the shape. A large insect larvae, possibly a mosquito larvae, has been spotted but I could not find again to put on video, i was large enough to see unaided. A large copepod was also in the aquarium that was large enough to be seen unaided. At least a third of the sediment in the aquarium has vanished.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

October 18 2009

Today I started some more observations on my aquarium, I also worked on identifying some of the microorganisms in my aquarium using Free Living Freshwater Protozoa: a Colour Guide by D.J. Patterson and Pennak's Freshwater Invertebrates of the United States by Douglas Grant Smith. I made this video with the help of Dr. Kenneth McFarland that features some of the organisms in my aquarium, I request that it be watched before you proceed so you will have an idea what I am talking about. First thing that really caught my eye was a midge emerged from my aquarium (picture shown top right courtesy of maineflyfish.com/ hatches/midges/001.htm) and the midge larvae taken by me on my phone right below it. This was probably the one I observed last week and the smaller one is now moving around as a larger larvae shown in the video. There were also several rotifers (shown top left courtesy of water.me.vccs.edu/ courses/ENV108/lesson7b.htm) several are shown in the video. They are usually free floating in the water or eating scum off of plants. They typically have one-two tails. I have a few sketches in my notes, please refer to those to see a couple of other types. Another organism is shown in the video before the amoeba, it is unknown at this moment as to what it is, it appears similar to a colpidium, but has a large vacuole and a beak like "face." There are very small organisms that can be seen through the 10 objective and larger magnifications only called Halteria (shown bottom left courtesy of www.pirx.com/droplet/ list_img.html). These guys were small and made quick jerking movements, they fed on mostly dead matter, such as an insect carcass that I saw. There was also a copepod (aka cyclops) which was a small squid-like microorganism that is rather tricky to find (picture shown 3rd down on right courtesy of www.hudsonregional.org/ mosquito/program.htm). I have also seen what may possibly be water bears last week, but I have not seen them since. They were tricky to find the first time, they practically blend in with the water and move INCREDIBLY fast to catch in a microscope. There were several algae types Spirogirum (shown left courtesy of biology.unm.edu/.../ Non-floweringPlants.htm) and a another cigar shaped algae (diatom) shown bottom right (courtesy of steel.ced.berkeley.edu/.../ ?page_id=78). I also added a food pellet at the end of the lab session, I will let you know what happens with that next week. My notes are posted as well.

There is a typo at the end of the video, I accidently called Dr. McFarland Dr. Gellert, sorry.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

We started today by creating our micro aquariums by using small glass containers a couple centimeters thick and filled them with a water type, each person chose the type they wished to use. My water was number 5--which came from a pond near Meads Quarry in Knox county, TN (picture far left). Then we put in two different plants: plant A- an algae (darker green plant closer to the left in the aquarium) and plant B-an insect eating aquatic plant (stringy mass of light green closer to the right). After putting the plants in the aquarium and filling it up with the water used previously, we took a look at the aquarium using our microscopes. We got a close up look of what was in the aquariums, including what was in the sediment from the water we used that settled at the bottom. Here are my observations.

There appear to be a large amount of microorganisms in the sediment of the water. One type was a small, brown, translucent, ovular shaped organism that moved rapidly in the sediment. Another was a larger ovular shaped organism with one-two tails that swam more in the open water but close to the sediment. A third is shown in the top right of my notes, there were many of them, they were transparent and quick moving, they also liked to hide from the light in the sediment, so finding them is difficult. An orange, transparent worm-like organism sifted through the sediment, apparently eating eat. Finally, a much larger organism that is similar to the previous, but MUCH larger, on the 10 objective it took up approximately half the view.