Stalking the Blob: Slime Molds of Boston Harbor Islands

Genevieve Lewis-Gentry
Genevieve Lewis-Gentry
Harvard University
Harvard University Herbaria
22 Divinity Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 495-1057
e-mail author
Delivered at 2008 Boston Harbor Islands Science Symposium.

Slime molds (Myxomycota) are eukaryotes in the Amoebozoa that feed on bacteria. They have several different life-form stages including amoeboid,spore-producing fruit bodies, and plasmodia (the inspiration for the 1950’s classic thriller movie “The Blob”). There had been no previous documentation of Myxomycota from the Boston Harbor Islands. A survey was conducted in August 2007 as part of the Planetary Biodiversity Inventory of the Myxomycota in conjunction with Dr. Steve Stephenson from the University of Arkansas. In this talk I will discuss the species of myxomycetes on the Boston Harbor Islands as well as basic aspects of myxomycete biology.

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