Gastrotrichs – the ephemeral little mermaids of nature

I’ve been checking on my hay infusion for quite some time now. On my last post, I described my observation that the bdelloid rotifer population has boomed so much that they became visible to the naked eye. Alongside this development, I also noticed that the population and diversity of protozoans have significantly decreased. Now, it’s…

A glimpse of the rotifers living in my hay infusion

Last month, I collected some pond water samples from my university and decided to make a simple hay infusion setup at home to see what microbes I can successfully culture. To make the hay infusion, I gathered some dried grass and dead leaves near the pond area (which we call “the lagoon”) and boiled them…

Culturing ciliates: The Hay Infusion, Day 8

My pond culture has reached its 100th day and I seem to have hit upon a wonderful ecological equilibrium. Yet, there is a certain impatience to see more, which is why I thought I’d make a hay infusion. The hay infusion is a wonderful concept. Making it is rather trivial (see Figure 1): Cut some hay (I…