The guy behind the lens

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I'm a Science Teacher, Nature Photographer, Husband, Father, and Grandfather who loves to explore the natural world by traveling, photographing and thinking. 


Saturday, February 8, 2014

MicroSafari – Up Close With Paramecium

This installment in my MicroSafari series focuses on the famous single celled ciliate Paramecium. Most students never get to see a good up close view of what actually is happening inside a paramecium because they tend to move very quickly and appear as “herky jerky” blurs to most folks unless you place them in a solution of “ProtoSlo” (methyl cellulose – I call it jello for microorganisms). This keeps them from swimming so fast and lets us see them in one spot where a higher power lens can focus on their internal activities such a food vacuole formation (eating) and contractile vacuole filling and contraction (drinking & peeing). When you get close enough to these creatures to see these things, you also get to appreciate their cilia and how quickly they beat. So – take a couple minutes and get up close with this most famous citizen of the microworld! 

Congratulation to my friends at EXO LABS ( who created the FOCUS Microscope Camera I use  for these videos - the FOCUS camera was recently featured in Apple's 30th anniversary video for the Mac - at 38 seconds into the video you can see students using the FOCUS camera with an  iPad to view what's under their microscope! 

Way to go Exo!


Kip Madden said...

Thanks for the journey into the micro world of the Paramecium John! Brings back memories of labs from days in the past :)

carol l mckenna said...

Lovely journey photos ~ thanks

ps. Update OS X (latest version and not running that smoothly0