Pollens of Baobab tree of Tanzania

On my recent visit I got to see the incredible Baobab trees. They are the known flowering plants with longest life span. The genus is Adansonia and family is malvacae

Invasive Beauty

I am an undergraduate student at Princeton University, studying ecology. Princeton is a beautiful place, complemented by the range of native and exotic plants planted around the campus. In the fall, these trees and bushes burst into bright reds, oranges, and yellows. With my foldscope, I examined a leaf of a Winged Burning Bush (Euonymus…

A fuzzy, white blanket

There is nothing that compares to a bite of fresh, vibrant fruit on a gentle spring day. Yet even during the chilly months, my sweet tooth never stops. So you could imagine my excitement when my roommate gifted me with an armful of blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries.  I stashed them in my fridge only…

A tiny, ancient tree

While walking to lab last week, a stunning sight caught my eye. It was a young gingko tree, covered in bright green-yellow leaves. This tree was interesting to me because I knew that all other tree of this species have dropped their leaves by this point in the season. Their fan-shaped leaves had fluttered silently…

Spotted lanternfly wing

As spotted lanternflies began to ravage the Princeton campus, students were encouraged to stomp them out if found. The student body has responded to this call: a brief stroll through the paved campus walkways reveals the carnage inflicted upon the adult lanterfly population. But few students have taken the time or had the curiosity to…

Effie’s Amazing Discoveries

These are the samples that I found at my house. The first one is grape skin, which is purple in colour. Next, in the middle is fiber from a T-shirt. Lastly, at the right is a type of vegetable.

My Microcosmos Soil Sample

This is a sample of soil that is used by the foldscope. Extra: This is a sample of a fiber from a shirt. (You can distinguish the fiber sample by the long strips.)

Online Webinar on Foldscope and its Applications by Dr Parul Gurjar

Online webinar on Foldscope and its applications organized by Dept. of Microbiology, Seth Kesarimal Porwal College, Kamptee, Nagpur in Collaboration with Dept. of Botany Arvindbabu Deshmukh Mahavidyalaya Bharsingi, Narkhed, Nagpur where the expert talk was given by Dr. Parul Gurjar, Former Junior Research Fellow, Indo-US DBT Foldscope.

Mystery of empty shell on tree trunks

I have been spotting empty shells of white colour on many tree trunks in Mumbai. I didn’t know what organism made them. This post is summary of journey I took to find out. The mystery remained unsolved for more than a year, but today another person made similar observation and posted on twitter and an…

Foldscope workshop for primary school students in Tanzania.

Foldscope session conducted at St. Joseph primary school , as part of rising stem star session conducted by projekt inspire team . Students were able to explore micro-world , to capture new knowledge related to science of living things and they saw how microworld appeared under 140x magnification using foldscope.

My Dictyostelium story

It was some 33 years almost to the date. There were three of us, partners in science; Srinivas V., Vinay T, and myself. We had just read this wonderful book on slime molds by William Loomis and we simply had to see this form of life. The Ruia college microbiology department is an unusual one….

Wing scales of butterflies

Once I read on Facebook that the wings of butterflies were made of scales and that the “dust” you see when you touch a butterflie are actually the scales, that amazed me because I couldn’t imagine how was that possible. A few weeks ago I saw a little black and white wing on the floor…

Ant

Thats why ant pinch pain so much

Soros de helecho

Microfotografía de soros de helecho tomada utilizando el foldscope y cámara de teléfono celular.

Nematode from Palo Alto Baylands

I collected mud from the Harriet Mundy Marsh (see previous post) and captured this worm–likely a nematode-in my foldscope. #Bio60_2021

Aquarium nematode

Found this little guy in a pinch of aquarium algae. Best I can tell as a layman using https://nematode.unl.edu/nemakey.htm#38, this belongs to the genus Mononchus. They are predatory, consuming other microscopic animals including other nematodes, but apparently not parasitic (good news for my fish tank).

A beating heart, perhaps?

Our pond had been welcoming a lot of frog (or toad) visitors each night since the monsoon started. Recently, I found what I am pretty sure were frog eggs on the edge of the pond: they were jelly-coated, but pretty small, and not spherical – sort of shaped like pomegranate arils. When disturbed with a…

Pollinators’ paradise

Bees are a rare sight in the city. They are seen as a threat, and we humans are driving them to extinction. Yet, without them no life is possible on Earth. A passion fruit vine in my garden sees scores of pollinators every afternoon. What’s admirable is that both species that visit, honeybees and stingless…