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How to use a microscope to see the wonders of the sea

Discussion in 'Marine Science and Physiology' started by eternaljonah, Dec 18, 2018.

  1. eternaljonah

    eternaljonah Captain

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Auroville
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    HI Guys
    I have just got a microscope :) and have been playing with it since a few days. I would love some tips and tricks for seeing the wonders of the sea. I have some questions and wonder if anyone knows the answers
    - To see plankton and zooplankton where should I take my sample's? taking a cup of water is that enough or do I need to pull a tiny net to get a higher concentration of it.
    - Is there any need to use stains to see these things? and if yes what stains.
    - What power magnification is the best to observe the Plankton?I have 4 lens on the microscope 4X, 10X, 40X and 100X oil immersion and a 10X and 15X lens for the eyepiece, what combo is the best for the final viewing?
    -I'm sharing these discoveries with students who come diving so anything else you would suggest I look at?
    - any books or other suggestions so I can learn a bit more :)

    Much appreciate the advice :)
     
    chillyinCanada likes this.
  2. MaxBottomtime

    MaxBottomtime Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Torrance, CA
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    Marine Plankton: Works of Art in the World of the Small
    The photos in the link were taken with a point and shoot camera pointed down the eyepiece of a microscope. The live collections came by way of dipping a cup into the water at the beach. The diatoms were from a nearby cliff with a little water added.
     
    scrane, Dogbowl and chillyinCanada like this.
  3. eternaljonah

    eternaljonah Captain

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Auroville
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    Nice pictures. What magnification are these photos? did you use any stains?
     
  4. MaxBottomtime

    MaxBottomtime Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Torrance, CA
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    Those are Merry photos and videos, but all she used was sea water in a dish. The magnification varied depending on the size of the animals. Some are large enough to see with the naked eye. I always think about them when I see someone spit in their mask, then rinse it with salt water. There is more stuff in the water than the spit. :)
     
    eternaljonah likes this.
  5. smellzlikefish

    smellzlikefish Marine Scientist

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Oahu, Hawaii
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    You might try using a simple filter system to concentrate the plankton before viewing. For example, you could run the water through a fine-meshed net or even coffee filter and put the detritus onto your slide.
     
    eternaljonah and Merry like this.
  6. Merry

    Merry Barracuda

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Torrance, California
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  7. drbill

    drbill The Lorax for the Kelp Forest Scuba Legend

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Santa Catalina Island, CA
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    I find a plankton net essential in gathering enough plankters to be useful. I have used magnifications as low as 10X and as high as 70-100X depending on size. I have a microscope adapter to attach my camera to either a dissecting scope or a standard scope.
     
    eternaljonah likes this.
  8. Sbiriguda

    Sbiriguda Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Italy
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    I thought this kind of photography required much more sophisticated equipment
     
  9. Sbiriguda

    Sbiriguda Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 25 - 49
    Location: Italy
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    May I ask which is your microscope adapter?
     
  10. Nick Steele

    Nick Steele DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Coral springs
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    You’d be surprised at what can be done. During some of my college courses we would use our phones to grab photos looking into microscopes. Mostly diatoms/zooplankton but most came out nicely.

    To OP if you want to see zooplankton and not have them going crazy all over the place maybe look into getting some clear slides. Use a dropper to drop water onto the slide and then cover it up with another slide this will give them less of a water coloumn to move around in and should slow them down for viewing pleasure.
     
    BenjaminF and Sbiriguda like this.

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