Sponge spicules

Discussion in 'General Images' started by LikesFish, 17 Nov 2012.

  1. LikesFish

    LikesFish

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    We all have these sponges growing in our sumps, I thought I'd show what they are made up of.

    _G0C9918.jpg

    The tissue is held together by spicules, tiny calcareous/siliceous structures that provide rigidity to the sponge. Here they are under DIC illumination. Each spicule is about 170┬Ám in diameter.

    7986612557_94d5356242_b.jpg
    20120904-DSLR_IMG_0309-Edit.jpg by pwnell, on Flickr

    Under polarised illumination using a lambda plate, the spicules show their true colours. The minerals that form the spicules have internal structure that is visible in this picture below as it scatters the light in different wavelengths.

    20121115-DSLR_IMG_0002.jpg
     
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  3. carlosdeandrade

    carlosdeandrade

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  4. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

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    WOW Amazing pics, Waldo!

    Did you take a small sample of the sponge and place this under a microscope to take the micro-shot?
     
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    LikesFish

    LikesFish

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    For the second photo I did that, yes. The third image I took a sponge and dissolved the tissue first to get clean spicules.
     

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