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Absurd Creature of the Week: The 100-Foot Sea Critter That Deploys a Net of Death. One of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute's ROVs photographed this siphonophore at a depth of 3,770 feet, shattering its sense of privacy.

Absurd Creature of the Week: The 100-Foot Sea Critter That Deploys a Net of Death

(c) 2005 MBARI Another glorious deep-sea siphonophore and a bunch of other crap that got in the way of the shot. (c) 2002 MBARI You can't see them here, but this deep-sea siphonophore has glowing red lures that mimic a copepod, drawing in fish that get caught up in the stinging tentacles. (c) 2007 MBARI The deep-sea "galaxy siphonophore" is, ironically enough, about as far away from space as you can get on Earth.


Infectious Disease. Neuroscience. HUMAN BODY SYSTEMS RESOURCES. CELLS. Peabody Museum - Tree of Life. Encyclopedia of Life. The Six Kingdoms. Plant Collection. Introduction to the Fungi. The Kingdom Fungi includes some of the most important organisms, both in terms of their ecological and economic roles.

Introduction to the Fungi

By breaking down dead organic material, they continue the cycle of nutrients through ecosystems. In addition, most vascular plants could not grow without the symbiotic fungi, or mycorrhizae, that inhabit their roots and supply essential nutrients. Other fungi provide numerous drugs (such as penicillin and other antibiotics), foods like mushrooms, truffles and morels, and the bubbles in bread, champagne, and beer. Fungi also cause a number of plant and animal diseases: in humans, ringworm, athlete's foot, and several more serious diseases are caused by fungi. Because fungi are more chemically and genetically similar to animals than other organisms, this makes fungal diseases very difficult to treat. Click on the buttons below to learn more about the Fungi. We don't have a large exhibit on fungi. Parts of a Mushroom. Making Spore Prints. Making Spore Prints by Michael Kuo While a single mushroom spore can't be seen by the naked eye, a pile of many spores can--and the color of a mushroom's spores, seen en masse, is a crucial identification feature.

Making Spore Prints

Obtaining a mushroom's "spore print" is therefore an essential step in the identification process. Before going through the nuts and bolts of making a spore print at home, it is worth noting that mushrooms frequently make their own spore prints, in nature. If you have ever noticed colored dust covering a leaf or the ground beneath a mushroom's gills or pores, you have probably witnessed this phenomenon. The Fungus Among Us: Fungal Science. Fungi Growth, Shapes, Types. Fun Facts: Pilobolus. Home > Catalog >Pilobolus Pilobolus -- Fungal Shotgun A cow stays close to its calf to make sure it will get everything it needs to grow.

Fun Facts: Pilobolus

Fungi Images. Cornell Mushroom Blog. Mushroom Key. Please note that the groupings used in this key do not correspond to taxonomic groups, but to observable characteristics.

Mushroom Key

When you have found the group most like your mushroom, there will be several photos to compare. DO NOT BE SURPRISED if you do not get an exact match; there are over 2000 species of fungi in the Northern Rockies and Pacific northwest, and under 400 photos on our site. You may wish to check with mycoweb or one of the other links listed on this site to find more photos to compare with. Serious students should check out Matchmaker, a program that keys out several hundred species.

Fungi Intro- Mycokids. Protista. GIANT BLADDER KELP. Giant Bladder Kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) Introduction Giant kelp (Macrocystis pyrifera) is a species of marine alga found along the Pacific coast of North America from central California to Baja California. Although it begins life as a microscopic spore at the ocean floor, this species may grow to lengths of 60 m (200 ft) with its upper fronds forming a dense canopy at the surface.

Giant kelp prefers depths less than 40 m (120 ft), temperatures less than 20ø C (72ø F), hard substrate such as rocky bottoms, and bottom light intensities above 1% that of the surface. The genus name Macrocystis means "large bladder" and it contains at least two recognized species. Geographic Distribution. Introduction to the Bacteria. Bacteria are often maligned as the causes of human and animal disease (like this one, Leptospira, which causes serious disease in livestock).

Introduction to the Bacteria

However, certain bacteria, the actinomycetes, produce antibiotics such as streptomycin and nocardicin; others live symbiotically in the guts of animals (including humans) or elsewhere in their bodies, or on the roots of certain plants, converting nitrogen into a usable form. Bacteria put the tang in yogurt and the sour in sourdough bread; bacteria help to break down dead organic matter; bacteria make up the base of the food web in many environments. Bacteria are of such immense importance because of their extreme flexibility, capacity for rapid growth and reproduction, and great age - the oldest fossils known, nearly 3.5 billion years old, are fossils of bacteria-like organisms. Click on the buttons below to learn more about the Bacteria. Antibiotic / Antimicrobial Resistance.

Antimicrobial resistance. Bonnie Bassler on how bacteria "talk". Dennis Kunkel Microscopy - Electron Microscopy Science Stock Photography. Introduction to the Archaea. The Domain Archaea wasn't recognized as a major domain of life until quite recently.

Introduction to the Archaea

Until the 20th century, most biologists considered all living things to be classifiable as either a plant or an animal. Extremophiles Are Key, Or Archaea. Biology concepts – archaea, bacteria, domains of life, hydrothermal vent ecosystem, chemosynthesis What is a bigger mistake – to overestimate or to underestimate?

Extremophiles Are Key, Or Archaea

If you overestimate someone, you may be disappointed with the result. Extremophile Hunter Searches for 'Impossible' Life. Who Are The Extremophiles? Diatoms can be found living in a wide variety of extreme environments, including ancient Antarctic Ice.

Who Are The Extremophiles?

Some believe they may even exist on Europa and in interstellar dust. The above diatom, Surirella, was collected from the alkaline and hypersaline Mono Lake. Details An extremophile is an organism that thrives under "extreme" conditions. Archaea. There are three main types of archaea: the crenarchaeota (kren-are-key-oh-ta), which are characterized by their ability to tolerate extremes in temperature and acidity.


The euryarchaeota (you-ree-are-key-oh-ta), which include methane-producers and salt-lovers; and the korarchaeota (core-are-key-oh-ta), a catch-all group for archaeans about which very little is known. Among these three main types of archaea are some subtypes, which include: Introduction to the Characteristics of life. Virus Structure. Virus Structure Viruses are not plants, animals, or bacteria, but they are the quintessential parasites of the living kingdoms. Although they may seem like living organisms because of their prodigious reproductive abilities, viruses are not living organisms in the strict sense of the word.

Without a host cell, viruses cannot carry out their life-sustaining functions or reproduce. They cannot synthesize proteins, because they lack ribosomes and must use the ribosomes of their host cells to translate viral messenger RNA into viral proteins. Viruses cannot generate or store energy in the form of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), but have to derive their energy, and all other metabolic functions, from the host cell. All viruses contain nucleic acid, either DNA or RNA (but not both), and a protein coat, which encases the nucleic acid. Are Viruses Alive? Created by George Rice, Montana State University "Viruses straddle the definition of life. They lie somewhere between supra molecular complexes and very simple biological entities. Are Viruses Alive?

Editor's Note: This story was originally published in the December 2004 issue of Scientific American. In an episode of the classic 1950s television comedy The Honeymooners, Brooklyn bus driver Ralph Kramden loudly explains to his wife, Alice, “You know that I know how easy you get the virus.” Half a century ago even regular folks like the Kramdens had some knowledge of viruses—as microscopic bringers of disease. Yet it is almost certain that they did not know exactly what a virus was. Revealing the Origins of Life. UD Virtual Compound Microscope.