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Mysterious behavior of Bacillaria

Bacillaria is a colony in which numerous individual diatoms are connected. The individual diatoms are lined up side by side, which looks like a window blind when the colony is contracted. When the colony stretches out, the diatoms are connected nearly end to end in a long chain-like structure. Bacillaria usually moves in a straight line when extended, but can change directions freely when contracted. Various small diatoms, aggregates and crystals are stuck to Bacillaria and move along with it.

Commentary by Prof. Yuji Tsukii, Hosei University
This organism is definitely a type of Bacillaria, possibly Bacillaria paxillifer.

Sampling Date : 02 July 2009

Sampling Site : Hirose River A  Google Map

Dancing Bacillaria

Many cells of Diatom are connected side by side and each cell is gliding back and forth. As a whole, it looks like a dancing bamboo blind.

Commentary by Prof. Yuji Tsukii, Hosei University
I’d like to add some comments about the Japanese names for genus Bacillaria. In Japanese, genus Bacillaria is referred to as either “Kusarikeisou” or “Ikadakeisou”, and the name “Ikadakeisou” is more commonly used. “Ikadakeisou” suggests the image of “a raft”, whereas “Kusarikeisou” suggests “a chain”. Both refer to the shape the organism makes when it moves, which may appear to some people as a raft, and to others as a chain. Since there is no strict rule for assigning the Japanese name to each organism within genus Bacillaria, the dual Japanese names will likely continue.

Sampling Date : 09 August 2009

Sampling Site : Hirose River B  Google Map