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Animal Life

What might Haematococcus be doing in your yard?


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March 24, 2013 5:10PM

Discoloring the water in your birdbath -- Haematococcus is a type of reddish or pinkish fresh water algae.

Haematococcus, common polluter of birdbaths, probably does annoy at least some of the wildlife. Then again, probably not all that much. About semi-immortal and seemingly harmless chameleon-like algae, which is a fair to middling introductory description of Haematococcus pluvalis, birdbath division. Maybe it will eat fungus. Or absorb it, or something. Haematococcus pluvalis resembles an organic rust. When one scrapes it, dry and seemingly dead from the birdbath's bottom, it has yet some life left to it. It is in a state resembling dormancy. If one is so inclined, one can reach into one's home laboratory, grab a cover slip, put a sample of Haematococcus beneath it and add a bit of moisture. Through the microscope glass, one can then watch excitedly as Haematococcus perks right up.

(see the related image link)