Field of Science

Mystery Micrograph #06

It's that time again!

Bar (barely visible - bottom right) = 3um, SEM; to be referenced later

This one is demonically hard, so open to everyone. And their PIs.
We really desperately need some outbreeding here, so please someone NOT affiliated (past or present) with a certain dep't get it!

Due Sunday sometime. Beer reward* until too many hints have been dispensed (which is at my discretion =P)

*That is, if/when it is able to be collected, and if/when I'm actually able to afford it. Alternatively, you could hire me and then the beer would be very easy to obtain. That's always an option. Srsly.

If it helps at all, an epic description of this creature:
"Looks a little like Giardia put through some medieval torture device. Or that thing on the Muppet Show that rearranged people's faces: "Here, I'll just grab your adhesive disc and stretch your posterior end over the top of that, and maybe chop off a couple of flagella, oh, and a funky divetty thing in the middle of the disc would look really neat too...."
Kind of a Mr-Potato-Head approach to protist ID."
- Opisthokont


  1. Yes!

    Wanna try for genus? (it's quite distinctive...)

    Also, are you a protistologist by any chance? ^_^

  2. No, I'm a phd student in micropalaeontology (i guess you can call that palaeoprotistology, though).
    And that's the reason why i won't try for the genus ^^. My knowledge of these non-fossilizable groups is really limited.

  3. I sponged off Johan's brains and typed 'trichomonad' into the NCBI taxonomy, then went through every one of them (all ten heh) with google image search. None to the pictures I got back looked anything as *cylindrical* as yours...

    I'll stab a guess at trichomonad vaginalis though, for no other reason other than that it made me with I'd hit the safe-search.

    (and if its tenax I'll be irritated...that was my first guess)

  4. It is vaginalis! I found an almost identical picture here:
    and then ran the text through google translator! Apparently it's written in slovakian :)

  5. Sorry, it's not Trichomonas - that one's one flagellum short ^_~

    Actually, it's neighbouring clade has a genus name reflecting that fact. /hint

    And not every trichomonad tree has this one, so don't be discouraged - keep looking! ^_^

    @Johan - micropaleontology is awesome! I'm gonna have to be really careful when I finally get around to writing up a few posts on that topic then... =P Which groups are you looking at?

  6. Cenozoic Radiolarians (my phd is precisely on antarctic neogene radiolarians).
    I did look at diatoms, silicoflagellates, synuraceans (or at least i think they were) and ebridians (well, one ebridian) during my Msc so technically any siliceous protist but now i work exclusively on radiolarians (and a couple of phaeodarians that're in the way); at least at the moment.

  7. Yes!
    Did you google -all- of them? =P

    I now owe Christopher a beer. Although, considering how much time I'm spending on the wretched Heterolobosea at the moment...grrr. *growls*

  8. No. Just one. The hints had rather given it away. And once I saw that big dorsal (anterior?) concavity on Cochlosoma, I knew it was a match.


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