Hypolithic cyanobacteria colonization of quartz at South Desert
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Hypolithic microbial communities (found underneath rocks) were encountered in the southern desert of Qatar where quartz rocks are ubiquitous and are a substrate for hypoliths. These hypoliths thrive where extreme temperature, moisture stress and high light intensity limit the occurrence of higher plants and animal life. A small-scale ecological survey indicated that 80% of the quartz rocks in the area were colonized by green hypolithic microbial communities dominated by colonization of cyanobacteria. Using light and electron microscopic analyses; the cyanobacterial community structure of hypoliths was shown to be dominated by cyanobacteria affiliated to the genera Chroococcidiopsis, Aphanothece, Pleurocapsa, Oscillatoria, Lyngbya, Leptolyngbya, Phormidium and Scytonema).
- Biological & Environmental Sciences [178 items ]