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What Lives In Moss?

Microbes aren’t just found in ponds. They’re also abundant in and around plants and soils. Mosses, some of the oldest plants on land, are home to many species of microbes.

In Episode 3 of Pondlife, [microbiologist Sally Warring] and fellow Museum scientist Michael Tessler travel to the Mohonk Preserve in upstate New York to explore microbial communities found in mosses, then bring samples back to the lab at the Museum. With modern DNA sequencing technologies, researchers can better understand just how much microbial diversity can be found living in and around these amazing plants.

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Explore the world of rotifers, ciliates, tardigrades (also called moss piglets or water bears), and more, and see how scientists use metabarcoding to learn more about what creatures live within a sampled ecosystem.

In case you missed them, watch episode one and episode two of this fantastic series from the American Museum of Natural History.

Plus: How do you find water bears (tardigrades) in the wild?

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