Right lateral view of the Phyllopharyngeid ciliate, Phascolodon vorticella (Stein, 1859). The genus is monotypic. P. vorticella is easily recognized by its distinctive horse-saddle shape. The cell is dorsoventrally compressed with a deep ventral furrow that bears 5-6 kineties on the right and 8-10 kineties on the left. There is one transverse file of cilia on the dorsal surface (i.e. the “dorsal brush”). The right kineties curve around the flared anterior end. The posterior tapers to a blunt point. At the anterior end of the ventral furrow is a slit-like cytostome with a prominent dorsally directed cytopharyngeal basket of nematodesmata 9seen well in this image). The coarsely granular macronucleus is located in the posterior ½ (seen well here). There are two contractile vacuoles, one on the right anterior side of the ventral furrow and the other on the left posterior side of it (only the anterior CV is seen here). Food vacuoles are visible in the cytoplasm. P. vorticella is planktonic and feeds mainly on algae and cyanobacteria. Collected from freshwater pond near Boise, Idaho December 2004. DIC optics. This image was taken by William Bourland. He now uses a Zeiss Axioskop 2 with Spot Insight and Spot Flex CCD cameras (Diagnostic Instruments). Image copyright: William Bourland, image used under license to MBL (micro*scope).
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From the collection
Freshwater and Terrestrial Microbes of Idaho (USA) and Elsewhere
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