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Amoebic grazing of freshwater Synechococcus strains rich in phycocyanin

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>07/2009
<mark>Journal</mark>FEMS Microbiology Ecology
Issue number1
Number of pages7
Pages (from-to)106-112
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Fifteen strains of naked amoebae were presented with 19 strains of Synechococcus on an agar surface. After 14 days of incubation, each of the 285 combinations yielded one of three responses. 42.1% of combinations showed clearing (digestion) of the Synechococcus (C), 56.5% of combinations showed no clearing of the Synechococcus (N) while 1.4% of combinations showed partial clearing of the Synechococcus (P). In general, the Synechococcus strains showed variability in their susceptibility to digestion by the amoebae and the amoebae showed variability in their ability to digest the Synechococcus strains. There was no evidence for amoebae actively selecting profitable prey and equivalent-sized Synechococcus strains were ingested at the same rate, irrespective of their fate. There was some evidence of ‘size-selective’ grazing in that amoebae ingested the smaller Synechococcus strains at higher rates than the larger strains. However, there was no correlation between prey size and their ultimate fate. These data suggest that amoebae are not selective with regard to the ingestion of synechococci, but that ‘selection’ occurs at the digestion stage, i.e. whether the synechococci are digested or not.