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Marine Diatoms

Chaetoceros sp.


This chain of diatoms looked different than some of the others I saw, as the spines seemed to come off the cells at a perpendicular angle rather than a more acute angle like many of the others I saw.


A marine biologist on board skimmed some plankton using really fine mesh nets and we took a drop from that sample and placed it under a microscope. The sample was skimmed in Izhut Bay just off Afognak Island in somewhat shallow water (less than 200 feet).


Chaetoceros can be damaging to fish, as the spines can cut up the gills of small fish, and during large blooms they can even clog up their gills. Spines also can introduce bacteria when they damage tissue and also stimulate mucus production, both of which can be damaging and sometimes even deadly to fish.

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Spotted by

Alaska, USA

Lat: 58.22, Long: -152.25

Spotted on Sep 19, 2019
Submitted on Nov 1, 2019

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