The rotifer Hexarthra mira with resting egg
Dear visitor,

The initial idea for this website came up when we wanted to document the ecological work of our highschool which is located in the southern part of the Ruhr-district in Germany, thereby creating an online catalogue of the species occuring in the surroundings of our school. The focus was on the microscopical life in aquatic freshwater environments, i.e. a small pond that has been surveyed for more than 10 years before it was replaced by a new pond. A nearby brook complements the biodiversity with species typical for lotic waters.

The first update followed when the biological (marine and terrestrial) results of our excursions to the mediterranean sea were added.

If one tries to identify microscopical organisms it soon becomes evident that certain species can only be unequivocally identified by comparing them with other closely related species from other habitats. Therefore the online catalog now covers species collected and studied from other locations, first within Germany. One emphasis is now on rotifers. So discoveries from locations of adjoining European countries are included as well. About 300 species of rotifers are documented up to now.

Also the section of the marine species has undergone an update by adding images of species from several diving excursions in tropical sea areas.

Michael Plewka

news & updates
Some rotifers from South Tirol
At the beginning of Oct. 2014 various soil and moss samples were collected in the Alps of South Tirol. First examinations reveal the rotifers Adineta vaga var. rhomboidea, Adineta tuberculosa , Dissotrocha scutellata and Macrotrachela punctata.
A new pond-new rotifers
A new pond in Hattingen/NRW reveals some rotifer species not yet described on this site before: Trichocerca bicristata and Testudinella incisa. Hexarthra mira and Collotheca pelagica were found as well in this pond.
Rotaria socialis
The bdelloid rotifer Rotaria socialis from the water reservoir Wuppertalsperre.
Aspidiophorus silvaticus - a strange gastrotrich
The hairyback (gastrotrich) Aspidiophorus silvaticus has been found in a forest near Hattingen. Its habitus is quite unusual for a gastrotrich and resembles that of the rotifer Bryceella.
Macrotrachela tuberilabris
A new bdelloid rotifer has been found in Hattingen: Macrotrachela tuberilabris
Scepanotrocha simplex
The bdelloid rotifer Scepanotrocha simplex has been found in a forest near Hattingen.
Asplanchna sieboldi var. cruciformis etc.
Images for Asplanchna sieboldi var. cruciformis. Corrections and new images for Adineta barbata and Synchaeta longipes.
Some rotifers from Tirol, Austria
The "Pillerseetreffen 2014", held in Tirol, Austria, revealed some interesting rotifer species new to me, e.g. Collotheca edentata, Habrotrocha angusticollis, or Habrotrocha curvicollis. Some new images of Macrotrachela quadricornifera var. quadricornifera, Notommata allantois, Notommata groenlandica, Philodina flaviceps and Philadinavus paradoxus are on exhibition now.
Proales minima from Bavaria
The rotifer Proales minima found in a bavarian pond.
Some new images of Notommata tripus
Images of Notommata tripus from the nature-reserve Schwalm-Nettetal
Some rotifers from Brittany, France
Already in May 2014 some interesting rotifers could be found; eg. Filinia terminalis, Asplanchna (Asplanchnella) girodi, Conochilus dossuarius, 2 variations of Keratella cochlearis and Keratella quadrata and the rare Notholca psammarina.
Revision of the genus Synchaeta
Correction of species names; addition of new images, new species added: Synchaeta longipes
Sinantherina socialis
Images of Sinantherina socialis
Habrorocha novemdens
The rotifer Habrotrocha novemdens found in a bavarian forest.
Dorystoma caudata
The rotifer Dorystoma caudata found in a bavarian pond.
Notommata pseudocerberus
Notommata pseudocerberus found in a bavarian pond.
Trichocerca bidens
Trichocerca bidens found in a bavarian pond.
Otostephanos donneri
Otostephanos donneri found in a bavarian pond
Tetraedriella limbata from Bavarian pond
The Xanthophyte Tetraedriella limbata found in the Bergheimer Baggersee, Bavaria
mysterious rotifers
Observing rotifers for more than 15 years sometimes leads to finding some specimens that are not described in the literature (as far as this literature is available through libraries) or sources from the www. Here are some of them.
Cephalodella ventripes
Cephalodella ventripes found in a water reservoir near Wuppertal/ Germany
4 Rotifers from Sweden
Macrotrachela decora, Macrotrachela cf. nana, Habrotrocha lata and Scepanotrocha semitecta from a Sphagnum-sample in Aneboda, Sweden
New images for Notholca squamula and Notommata cyrtopus
Notholca squamula and Notommata cyrtopus have been found in new locations
Philodina acuticornis odiosa
Philodina acuticornis odiosa from Hattingen/ Germany
two rotifers from Mexico
Adineta ?vaga? and Philodina childi found in Bonampak, Mexico
Macrotrachela habita
Macrotrachela habita found in Hattingen, Germany; images of specimen from Italy added.
Sulawesi dive trip
In November 2013 we had a pleasant stay in the Mapia Resort near manado, the Onong Resort in Siladen and the Lembeh Resort located at the famous Lembeh Strait. Not only has the hospitality in all resorts been overwhelming, but also the knowledge and commitment of the dive guides is fabulous. Here are some images:
Proales laticauda
Proales laticauda, an only recently described rotifer found in the Eifel region
Habrotrocha pusilla var. textris
Mniobia incrassata
Dissotrocha macrostyla var. tuberculata
Mniobia tentans
Otostephanos torquatus
Notommata cyrtopus
Pleuretra humerosa
Philodina megalotrocha
Pediastrum integrum
Limnias melicerta
Floscularia melicerta
Lecane ludwigii
on the reproduction of Hydrodictyon reticulatum
Didymodactylos carnosus from Great Britain
Artforms in Nature
Philodina vorax
New images for Brachionus calyciflorus var. anuraeiformis
Lagerheimia longiseta
The bdelloid rotifer Pleuretra lineata has been found in Hattingen
The bdelloid rotifer Macrotrachela aculeata has been found in Hattingen
Polyarthra vulgaris: male specimen
Habrotrocha aspera
Squatinella leydigi- what is the spine good for?
Philodina nemoralis