Epilithic Diatoms of Western Pennsylvania
Due to the nature of this mission, a high quality compound microscope is essential and a pH meter, accurate to within .01 is most desirable. The purpose of this mission is to photographically document the permanent population of diatoms found in the fresh waters of western Pennsylvania and, when accompanied by suitable data, to find a correlation between the pH value of those waters and the types of diatoms found there. Sign in to join mission
There is no more precious resource than an adequate supply of clean fresh water; and there is no better indicator of water purity than the micro-organisms which make it their home. Diatoms are single celled golden algae that are encased in glass-like shells (frustules) composed mostly of silica that are intricately marked and nearly indestructible. Epilithic diatoms are diatoms that are not defined by their physical characteristics but by their habitat. They attach themselves to rocks that are submerged in both slow and fast moving waters. As such they can be considered permanent residents of the subject waters and good indicators of the water's purity.
Lat: 40.28 Long: -78.80