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Nitrifying Bacteria

>I confess I didn't know this. Karen; do you or any other list-lurker have
>more info about precisely what this gent found?  I'd like to know what is
>the breakdown of the nutrient active bacteria populations in our tanks.  I
>teach nitrogen cycling and use planted tanks in the classroom as "hands-on"
>examples. I can never confidently teach that lesson again w/o knowing what
>exactly is in the aquarium's bacteriological brew.

I think that you _can_ and should.  All you have to say is that there are a
_number_ of bacteria that serve the function of converting ammoniua(um) to
nitrite, and ther are a number of others that convert nitrite to nitrate.
The ones in fresh water are differnet from those in marine water, though
they fill the same ecological niche, and do the same task.  Not all of them
have been identified by name, but very few of the bacteria floating around
in the world _have_ been identified by name.  That doesn't mean that they
don't exist, or even that we don't _know_ that they exist.  It only means
that no one has named them yet.  Maybe one of your students will get fired
up enough about the idea that they'll go off and _work_ on that when
they're adults!<g>  

If we only taught those thing that we know _everything_ about, there'd be
mighty little that we could teach at all!

As far as Tim's work, he's a really nice guy, and I suspect if you
contacted him via Marineland, he'd be happy to give you the information he
has directly.  I probably could locate the original article if I tried
really hard, but it would be a _lot_ of work.  Oops.  I see someone else
has already given you a pointer to Tim's AFM article anyway.

>On another note, myself and the rest of the Faithful Florida "Floratank"
>Fans will probably not be list lurking for a while. We'll too busy
>scrambling for plywood, batteries and babyfood for the next 24hrs, then
>digging ourselves out of hurricane Floyd rubble for the next week. If my
>computer survives, I'll thank you for your answer.

We'll certainly be keeping you in our prayers!