Other "Stuff" Photos - more photos

Organic Matter, Mineral Material, Other Organisms

1.  Dauer larvae are the dormant stage of certain groups of nematodes.  Note the mouth-like dimples at one in, and the pointed tail-like opposite end.  The mid-body swelling is typical of these dormant stages as well.

Dauer Larvae

2.  Lignin-cellulose from a decomposed seed coat on the right hand side of the field.  Other tan and clear bits might look somewhat like fungi, but they are not uniform diameter all along the strand, so not actually fungi.  Lots of small cocci, a couple lactobacillus or related species of bacteria present as well.


3.  Insect larva - probably fly larva. Larva only occur under anarobic conditions. Bacteria can be seen inside the body.

Insect Larva

4.  This is an air bubble. A second air bubble to the top right. It has slightly different layers within our drop of water. When you're at the top of the air bubble, or the bottom of the air bubble, it's going to be completely black. As you focus through the air bubble, those black walls are going to get narrower and narrower until there's just a clear bubble. What's causing the air bubble? Look at the oil drops. Someone didn't clean the slide very well.

Insect Larva

5.  This is a sand grain. You can see the mineral outline of the sand grain, but it is completely covered with a layer of organic matter and billions of bacteria -- sticking and holding that organic matter to the surface of that sand grain. 

Grain of Sand

6.  Mineral particle (red arrow).  Not a problem if one or two are in the sample. If you see a lot of mineral particles in every field, you have a problem. The root system and uptake of nutrients will be affected. Below the mineral particle is a piece of plant material, possibly bark.

Mineral Particle

7.  Seed coat at 100 x.

Seed Coat

8.  Cellulose from shredded paper used in a compost pile (small blue arrow) that hasn't decomposed; plants cells (red arrow), and nematode (large blue arrow).

Cellulose, Plants Cells, & Nematode

9.  Fungus?  or Organic matter?  Note the multiple cells in the strand leading to the conclusion this is organic matter, not a fungal hypha.  Additionally, the density of the grains of mineral material (silt and clays mostly) make it difficult to clearly see that this is organic matter, not fungus.  Most likely increasing dilution by a factor of 2 would make things much easier

Fungus or Organic Matter?

10.  Four round, cytoplasm-filled (there are bacteria inside the cell, with vacuoles appearing and disappearing inside the cell, and if you are patient, the tiny pseudopods these amoebae put out can be observed) Cercospora, which are a type of amoeba, can be found in the center of the picture.  Be careful to differentiate the round cells filled with cytoplasm (Cercospora), from the flagellate cysts which are clear, with no cytoplasm, bacteria or vacuoles present which can be found around the edges of this picture.  

Cytoplasm-filled Cercospora

Dauer Larva

11.  Another dauer larva - typically only certain genera of nematodes can produce these dormant stages, called dauer larvae.  Current research suggests these dormant stages are produced as a response to cold temperatures.  Dormancy can last a very long time, although warm temperatures are most likely the trigger to wake them.