Foldcope picnic at Spreckels Lake, San Francisco

I had a belated birthday afternoon picnic with my dear friends Dina and Summer at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. It was such a lovely day outside, so we decided to go for a nice stroll around Spreckels Lake, which…

 …offers the beauty of Monterey Cypress trees, which create a beautiful silhouette against the sunlight, especially during a visit at dusk or dawn. Because of this, the lake is a nice place to gather your thoughts, read a book, or simply relax. (Excerpt from

And the lake is a wonderful place to share the wonders of microcosmos with your friends, too!

Btw, a lot of people were sailing their remote control model boats, which was so fun to see. I learned later that this lake is home of a model yacht club that’s been around for more than 100 year! Wouldn’t it be nice for us to cherish Foldscope clubs all over the world for that long (and more), too? 🙂

I took a sample of laker water and algae…

I prepared a sample slide (with glass slide and glass cover slip)

Photo by Dina

Then took a closer look with my friends.
And for the first time, I identified Rotifers (Rotifera)!

 At first we thought something was swimming around at the top of screen (00:43), but then I saw that cute Rotifer right above that movement.

I recognized this tiny aquatic animal because its shape reminds me of pretty blue flowers called rindo in Japan  (Gentiana scabra) 🙂 

Then I remembered what my friend super Foldscoper Max taught me before how these organism get food by “filter feeding.” But how does that work??  How are they able to create a vortex (if that’s even the right word in this context) to keep those particles move towards them so well? I shall look into the Microcosmos to see what fellow Foldscopers have found out.

I also want to share Dina’s experimentation with different lighting!
It’s super gorgeous and interesting. Take a look at the slideshow…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Thank you Dina and Summer for hanging out with me! And thank you for letting me use your phones to capture these awesome photos and videos. Looking forward to lots more fun together 🙂


One Comment Add yours

  1. Manu Prakash says:

    Dear Honomi/Summer and group,

    What a wonderful get together. A couple of possibilities for the things I can see in the videos:

    1) The long green filaments are possibly oscillatoria or a similar species. It’s fun to see them dividing at many places.
    2) The vortices are real; it’s beautiful – now many organisms generate these feeding vortices. Two possibilities are either rotifers or vorticella. If you see the organisms come out of a long stalk; it’s vorticella for sure. It’s really fun to watch the vortices for some time to get a general sense of feeding currents. They are very strong, compared to size of these organisms.
    3) Also, I can see a lot of small diatoms; these are these rod like shapes everywhere. Many a times, this is what gives water its green hue (seems like the water was really green) – that means the diatoms are blooming.

    I love how you put the multiple pictures; can you explain how you made a little slide show inside. Wonderful to see this here.

    Keep exploring.



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