Have a Diatom-ical Halloween!

Fact is often stranger than fiction. Forget the tall tales of spirits, witches and ware wolves there are many life forms hiding in plain sight. Diatoms and dinoflagellates are microscopic algae. Diatoms form ornate cell walls out of silica. While dinoflagellates have diverse and complex cell coverings, including cellulose plates which form an armour. Diatoms and dinoflagellates are found almost everywhere including both fresh and salt water and other wet surfaces such as soil. Try as you might there is no escaping their presence!

We are experimenting with creating a diatom & dinoflagellate glow in the dark mobile for upcoming craft fairs and for sale on Etsy. Stay tuned!

The mobile features (from left to right): Odontella sp, Karenia sp, Ceratium sp.

The files used for printing were created using National Science Foundation funding by the Marine Microalgae Research Associates LLC (Mr. Adam Nienow) and distributed by Dr. Jeffrey Krause of the University of California Santa Barbara.

Here are photographic images of what these creatures look like:

Odontella Aurita (Photo Credit: Richard A. Ingebrigtsen via Wikimedia)

 

Karenia brevis (Photo Credit: G. Hansen via Wikimedia)

 

Ceratium tripos (Photo Credit: Smithsonian Environmental Research Center)

Ceratium tripos (Photo Credit: Smithsonian Environmental Research Center)

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