Amoeba visible to the naked eye

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lorb
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Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby lorb » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:15 pm UTC

Wiki says the species Amoeba proteus averages about 220-740 μm in length. I'm sure i could see something that is half a mm in size with the naked eye. Why have i never in my whole life seen an amoeba?
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Angua
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby Angua » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:28 pm UTC

How common is it and where is it found?
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Jplus
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby Jplus » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:46 pm UTC

Also, how much attention do you normally pay to such small objects?
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++$_
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby ++$_ » Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:05 am UTC

Most amoebas live in murky water and are translucent to transparent. As a result, you can't see them when they're in their natural habitat, especially if you don't want to stick your nose in the pond.

If you want to see them you'd better take a sample of the water and look at it with backlight. It's possible to see creatures that are usually considered "microscopic" in this way.

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WarDaft
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby WarDaft » Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:10 am UTC

Try [url="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaos_(amoeba)"]these[/url], sometimes referred to as giant amoebae. They aren't really. I mean, they only get up to 0.5 cm in length, hardly giants at all.
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby Technical Ben » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:01 am UTC

++$_ wrote:Most amoebas live in murky water and are translucent to transparent. As a result, you can't see them when they're in their natural habitat, especially if you don't want to stick your nose in the pond.

Spoiler:
If you want to see them you'd better take a sample of the water and look at it with backlight. It's possible to see creatures that are usually considered "microscopic" in this way.


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Anaximander
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby Anaximander » Fri Apr 20, 2012 5:10 am UTC

I actually saw one with the naked eye in 7th grade science class. True story. We had a bunch of lake water samples and, by luck of the draw, I actually got a drop of lake water on my glass slide with a large amoeba cruising around. You could see it moving pretty good and in great detail with the the microscope. But if you looked very closely at the back lit sample with the naked eye, you could make out a teeny little speck oozing about.

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Diadem
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Re: Amoeba visible to the naked eye

Postby Diadem » Fri Apr 20, 2012 6:35 am UTC

Not amoebas, but the largest single-celled organisms in the world are 20cm big. Ought to be visible with the naked eye ;)
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