Heterophrys (het-err-off-riss) is a centrohelid heliozoon - the most speciose group of heliozoa. The heliozoa do not form a natural (monophyletic and holophyletic) group of protists, but a type of organization that have been arrived at from a number of different evolutionary lineages. Heterophrys is apparently naked, careful scrutiny usually reveals delicate radiating (organic) spicules. the arms terminate on a non-nuclear organizing centre (the dark dot in this cell). Heliozoa are predators, motile prey is captured after swimming into the arms. This cell seems to have been eating algae. Differential interference contrast. This picture was taken by Linda Amaral Zettler, and David Patterson of material from the freshwater Lamont Pond (New York State, USA). Image copyright: L Amaral-Zettler and D. J. Patterson, image used under license to MBL (micro*scope).
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From the collection
Lamont Pond, freshwater, New York
|Description of Heterophrys: Centroheliozoa with a mucous coat incorporating radial organic spicules. Often with algal symbionts. Type species H. myriapoda Archer, 1869. |