The Olympus Bioscapes 2009 competition results are in, and the winner is…
Water flea Daphnia atkinsoni. This specimen has a “crown of thorns,” a defensive trait induced in offspring only when the parents sense chemical cues released by one of their main predators, the tadpole shrimp Triops cancriformis. The water flea´s exoskeleton (exterior structure, green) and subcellular details within the organism (nuclei – tiny blue dots) are both visible. Dr. Jan Michels, Department of Functional Morphology and Biomechanics, Institute of Zoology, Christian Albrecht University of Kiel, Germany. First Prize, 2009 Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition®.
We are approaching the millennial anniversary of the first meaningful written description of how lenses and light could be used to magnify objects. It was in 1011 that Arab scientist Ibn al-Haytham (Alhazen) began writing the Book of Optics, which described the properties of a magnifying glass, principles that later led to the invention of the microscope. The entrants in the 2009 Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition provide fitting tribute to nearly 1,000 years of making the invisible visible.
Beautiful work here, not all invertebrates, but well worth a gander.
Galleries of all the winners and the runners-up can be found at Olympus BioScapes.