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Re: Wowlgae

Generally when looking at samples, the tiny little stuff at highest mag are
Cyano's and most all of these are Oscillitoria.
Most samples have this in there. I've never seen a pure sample of one algae
from a tank.

Very large darker green algae tend to be Cladophora. They are the largest
generally that you'll see under a scope.

You might find a few diatoms in your samples but not too many. If you sample
from the substrate most Diatoms tend to be rod shaped, like a roll of
pennies stacked together.

Another thing when looking into a scope. Things are 3D but you see only in
2D here. Look around and imagine the sample turned on it's side or flipped
over to one side etc rather than a perfect head on shot.

In sokme cases the only way to figure out what the algae is requires
watching it and waiting for sex to happen. Then you have a relatively unique
structure to look for in the plant.

I cannot guess too much without seeing the sample.
Tom Barr
> The sample I received was contaminated by a few small pieces of substrate
> to which the material was firmly attached.
> There was also present some
> highly multicellular matter, generally photosynthetic, with cells about
> 30x60u and formed into branched tubular structures with a diameter of about
> 600u gently squashed and substantial length (several mm).  There appeared
> to be chloroplasts in this material.
> The algae itself was filamentous, with a 60u diameter and a few mm
> long.  There were septa dividing the filaments several hundred u
> apart.   There were numerous chloroplasts.    There were also rectangular
> plate-like structures that were segmented perpendicular to the largest
> dimension rather like pieces of a candy bar.  These plates were about
> 30-40u wide and as long as was dictated by the number of segments (3-6,
> generally), about 15u per segment.
> Half the filaments had a smooth surface, the other half had hair-like
> structures extending from them.  These were about 10ux50u.  They were
> either spaced about 20-80u apart and brown or very densely packed and
> green.  There may have been two different algae in the sample.  The brown
> hairs sometimes had a 1x10u stalk attaching them to the filament.
> I searched Dillard for a matching pic but did not find one.  Is there a
> resident phycologist who can take a shot from this description?