“Inhabitants of the Microworld” is a series of short videos produced by Science into Images that aims to show the enormous amount of organisms that inhabit the microscopic world that we cannot see with the naked eye.
These inhabitants are mainly protozoa, microalgae, microscopic animals such as tardigrades, nematodes or water fleas, as well as the initial stages of development of larger organisms, such as some mosquitoes. All of them belong to that part of ecosystems that we hardly ever pay attention to. They are many, many of them, and although they pass completely unnoticed by most of us, they are fundamental to the functioning of the biosphere as a whole.
The Inhabitants of the Microworld series is designed to serve as an educational resource to support teaching, however, due to the special circumstances arising from the COVID-19 pandemic that is hitting our society these days, we have made it available to all those interested through our YouTube channel. We hope that both educators and parents and, especially, children and young people, can enjoy it and learn with it, and that this will help them to cope better, even if it is only in small pills, with the confinement to which we are forced.
From Science into Images we would like to ask you, if you like the series, to share it with the people you think might also like it.
During these days of confinement by COVID-19, the Science into Images team has edited a small booklet for children to learn about some microscopic organisms while painting them.
The booklet is in two languages, Catalan and Spanish. And it has several versions.
The GENERAL BOOKLET, in din A4 horizontal format to be able to print it easily, contains 10 photographs of 10 different microscopic organisms. Each one with its explanation and with its drawing to colour.
The LEARNING BOOKLET, in din A4 vertical format, contains the 10 photographs of the microscopic organisms in addition to the explanations. It is designed to be consulted digitally, from your mobile phone, ipad/tablet or computer, as printing involves the consumption of a large amount of printer ink.
The DRAWING BOOKLET, in din A4 format, contains the 10 drawings of the microscopic organisms prepared for children to colour them. It is designed to be printed and to be coloured with the learning booklet nearby so that the information about the microorganism and its colouring can be consulted. We hope that you take advantage of it and that the quarantine will become more bearable with these contents that we have created for you.
Tomorrow, at the Botanical Garden of the University of València, there will be a screening of the documentary film “Symbiotic Earth. How Lynn Margulis rocked the boat and started a scientific revolution” as part of the conferences “Woman and Science at the Botanical”.
On this occasion, at express request of the organisers, a reduced version (62 minutes) of John Feldman’s original film will be screened.
In “Field notebook” (that’s how we’ve named Science into Images’ blog), we will be writing our day by day (or week by week, month by month, as it comes) working on the Science into Images project.
We will talk about biology, microscopy, audiovisual material, scientific content, research and conferences in which we participate, trips, excursions, projects in progress, challenges that we encounter in the course of our work and anything else that we think might be of your interest.
The aim of this “Field Notebook” is to get a little closer to you and for you to be able to penetrate the entrails of Science into Images, to know the challenges of our work and to feel that you are part of this project. In addition, you have a comments section where you can leave your opinions, suggestions and ideas about each of the topics or entries we share. We invite you to do so!
Today, as the first entry of “Field notebook”, Rubén Duro has written his experience in the Conference “The Symbiotic Earth. How Lynn Margulis started a scientific revolution” which he attended on 11 and 12 December 2019 at the University of Valencia. You can visit and read it through this link: https://scienceintoimages.blogspot.com/
Next week Science into Images will be recording high-speed images for the research on the shooting of the Pelagia noctiluca jellyfish nematocysts. Nematocysts are the stinging capsules that have jellyfish and other cnidarians (corals, gorgonians, anemones, etc.) which are the responsible of the painful and even dangerous bites of these beautiful and attractive marine animals.
The cameras we usually
use to take video images in High Definition (Full HD) work at a speed that
ranges between 25 and 60 images per second (fps.), with some exceptions, such
as our Olympus OM-D E-M1X, which allows us to record in Full HD at 120 fps.,
that is, one single image at approximately every 8 thousandths of a second. However, even
that speed is too low to capture the image of the firing of the nematocysts,
which are estimated to be fired at a speed of approximately 3 thousandths of a
second, more than double the maximum speed at which our camera can work.
The recordings will be carried out at the Institute of Marine Sciences (ICM-CSIC) with a pco.dimax HD® camera that allows us to capture images in Full HD at 2128 fps. Iberoptics Sistemas Ópticos s.l. provides the camera, and its director Manuel Herrera will prepare the recording system with which we will work for three intense days. This high speed allows to capture an image (a photograph) approximately every 5 ten-thousandths of a second, something fundamental for the investigation, since that will allow the researcher Ainara Ballesteros, responsible for the project, to later calculate both the actual firing speed and the energy released during the firing of each nematocyst.
On 12 December 2019, Rubén Duro (Science into Images) will give a lecture entitled “Symbiosis through images: using images to support research” during the scientific conference “Tierra simbiótica: cómo Lynn Margulis inició una revolución científica” (Symbiotic Earth: How Lynn Margulis started a scientific revolution). The conference has been organized by the Cavanilles Institute of Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology of the University of Valencia with the collaboration of the Unit of Scientific Culture and Innovation and has as its fundamental axis the figure of biologist Lynn Margulis, whose theories on endosymbiosis (the formation of the eukaryotic cell as a result of the symbiosis of different prokaryotic cells) and symbiogenesis (the creation of new species as a result of the transfer of genetic material between symbiontic organisms) changed the fundamental paradigm of biology during the last third of the 20th century. Rubén Duro’s lecture will focus on the importance of observation, and its subsequent recording in still or moving images, for scientific research. This importance lies not only in obtaining images to illustrate the scientific publications of the different research groups with which he collaborates, but also in opening up new avenues of research based on the phenomena observed. In addition to Rubén Duro, the speakers include leading figures in the field of research in different areas, such as Ricardo Amils, head of the Extremophilic Molecular Biology group at the Severo Ochoa Molecular Biology Centre (CSIC-UAM) and senior researcher at the Astrobiology Centre (INTA-CSIC); Lorenzo Lamattina, Associate Professor of Cellular and Molecular Biology at the Universidad Nacional de Mar del Plata (UNMdP), Senior Researcher (CONICET) and Director of the Institute of Biological Research at UNMdP; Leopoldo García Sáncho, Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Pharmacy at the Complutense University of Madrid, and Begoña Vendrell, Researcher at the Institut de Ciències del Mar (ICM-CSIC). The main event of the conference is the screening of the film “Symbiotic Earth: How Lynn Margulis rocked the boat and started a scientific revolution”, directed by John Feldman (Hummingbird Films) in whose production Rubén Duro also collaborated. The film, which due to its long duration will be screened in two parts, tells the scientific and personal story of Lynn Margulis, one of the most important scientists of the 20th century and highlights not only her importance in the paradigm shift of biological evolution but also in the struggle of a woman in a world, the academic world, dominated by men.
This year, the colloquium will be held on the occasion of the centenary of the birth of Professor Ramon Margalef López (1919-2004), and has been entitled “The scientist driving ecology at the Banyoles Pond”.
During the 3 days of the colloquium, there will be several activities to raise awareness of the ecologist and his work, such as a Roundtable on “The studies promoted by Dr. Margalef and his scientific legacy”, six papers by various biologists and socioecologists and a guided tour by boat through the pond of Banyoles, among others.
We will participate in some of the activities and we encourage you to participate too. We look forward to seeing you on 22, 23 and 24, this weekend, in Banyoles (Girona).
We leave you the complete program in PDF here in case it is of your interest.
Last September, the researcher Ainara Ballesteros, from the Institut de Ciències del Mar, and Rubén Duro, creator of Science into Images, published the article “La picadura de una medusa” in the journal “Investigación y Ciencia”.
The article is about the mechanism used by jellyfish to “sting”. When jellyfish want to attack a prey or when they want to defend themselves against a threat, throw some small filaments that discharge the stinging venom through their cnidocytes.
In the article, Ainara and Rubén explain their research and the solutions they provide to these stings. In addition, it contains detailed photomicrographs of the cnidocytes and venom capsules.
On December 11th the film “Symbiotic Earth: how Lynn Margulis rocked the boat and started a scientific revolution” will be screened at the University of Valencia, Spain. The documentary film has been directed by the prestigious northamerican director John Feldman (Hummingbird Films) and is distributed and licensed worldwide by Bullfrog Films. Rubén Duro (Science into Images) is in charge of the Spanish tour of the film and will be introducing it to the attendants to the screening in Valencia.