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Bacteria slime on formations

PostPosted: Jun 27, 2011 10:33 am
by Cheryl Jones
What Lies Beneath
Story By Gisela Telis
Arizona Public Media
June 26, 2011

"About 2,000 species make their home in the cavern—a high number given the hostile setting—and they’re a remarkably diverse lot.

“Compare one stalactite to another stalactite just two feet away, and they have different microbial communities,” says Ortiz. “A different room in the cave will have a completely different community."

When spared the DNA extraction and allowed to grow in the lab, some of the bacteria produce their own bright red pigment. Others appear to grow crystals of calcium carbonate..."

Read on: ... s-beneath/