Multiple Lines of Evidence Shed Light on the Occurrence of Paramecium (Ciliophora, Oligohymenophorea) in Bromeliad Tank Water

Authors

  • Paulo R. B. Buosi,

    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ecologia de Ambientes Aquáticos Continentais, Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Maringá, Paraná, Brasil
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  • Adalgisa F. Cabral,

    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ecologia de Ambientes Aquáticos Continentais, Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Maringá, Paraná, Brasil
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  • Taiz L. L. Simão,

    1. Faculdade de Biociências, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil
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  • Laura R. P. Utz,

    1. Faculdade de Biociências, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil
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  • Luiz F. M. Velho

    Corresponding author
    1. Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ecologia de Ambientes Aquáticos Continentais, Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Maringá, Paraná, Brasil
    • Correspondence

      L.F.M. Velho, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ecologia de Ambientes Aquáticos Continentais, Universidade Estadual de Maringá. Av. Colombo 5790; 87020-900, Maringá, Paraná, Brasil

      Telephone number: +55 44 30115969; FAX number: +55 44 30114625; e-mail: felipe.velho@gmail.com

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Abstract

Phytotelmata are vegetal structures that hold water from the rain, and organic matter from the forest and the soil, resulting in small, compartmentalized bodies of water, which provide an essential environment for the establishment and development of many organisms. These microenvironments generally harbor endemic species, but many organisms that are found in lakes and rivers, are also present. Here, we report, for the first time, the occurrence of the ciliate genus Paramecium in the tank of the bromeliad species Aechmaea distichantha. The identification of the Paramecium species was performed based on live observations, protargol impregnation, scanning electronic microscopy, and sequencing of the 18s rRNA. The absence of Paramecium from bromeliad tank water was highlighted in several earlier investigations, and may be due to the fact that this species is unable to make cysts. The occurrence of Paramecium multimicronucleatum in our samples may be explained by the proximity between the bromeliads and the river, a potential source of the species. Further, we also believe that the counting methodology used in our study provides a more accurate analysis of the species diversity, since we investigated all samples within a maximum period of 6 h after sampling, allowing minimum loss of specimens.

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