size (L x B): ca. 100 x 90 µm



Desmid of the month
July 2002

Micrasterias crux-melitensis

In the Netherlands, Micrasterias crux-melitensis is the only representative of the genus Micrasterias that may be encountered in slightly alkaline water bodies (next to acideous habitats). Whereas other Micrasterias species are only to be expected in moorland pools and bogs in Pleistocene areas, M. crux-melitensis can also be sampled in peat pits and ditches in the Holocene part of the Netherlands, provided that trophic and saprobic levels are low. Therefore, M. crux-melitensis may be considered an excellent indicator of high water quality and conservation value. As a result of a generally improved water quality in the Netherlands the species in question seems to become somewhat more common.

Another cell of Micrasterias crux-melitensis (bright field photograph).