October 27, 2012 | 4
Back in the good ol’ days on Skeptic Wonder I used to run a little “Mystery Micrograph” series, where an image or a plate (that’s not immediately obvious without context) would be grabbed from a paper and posted without source, and much agony would ensue over trying to figure out what it is (or some cheater who happens to work on the bug would drop by and ruin the fun ;p). Or sometimes it was immediately obvious to readers. In any case, it seemed like people were having fun! So I’d like to bring back the Mystery Micrographs and hope for a bit of interaction (which I probably haven’t been helping by vanishing for the better part of a year…), and this time I’ve got some of my own images to use too (haha, good luck with reverse Google image search on those!). And of course you are allowed to make guesses and ask questions.
Just one little request: if you’ve already seen the image elsewhere or are deeply familiar with the subject from your work… please try to give others a chance first!
Alright, so let’s start the first round of enigmatic imagery from the alien world of small things! Tell me who this critter is (genus is enough), and what we’re looking at.
Big hint: The colour is completely natural and no stains were used.
(My hope with these Mystery Micrographs is to encourage some active thinking both about interpreting micrographs as well as the microbial world itself — it really takes work to intuitively “feel” things on a foreign scale, and I’m just getting started myself, to be honest!)