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Golden Alga in Texas

Kingdom Protista (one-celled plants and animals)

amoebas AMOEBAS

Rhizopoda
Amoebas are among the simplest single-celled animals. Most are jelly-like blobs of protoplasm. They have short pseudopodia or false feet which are arms of protoplasm used to surround food objects. Some continually change shape, but others build cases of specific designs for protection.
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Brown AlgaeBROWN ALGAE
Phaeophyta
Brown algae range from small cells to very large colonies. This group includes many; typically marine species such as kelp and sargassum.

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Cellular Slime MoldsCELLULAR SLIME MOLDS
Acrasiomycota
Cellular slime molds usually exist as amoeba-like single cells. However, they can also aggregate into masses and form mushroom-like sporangia.

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Ciliated ProtozoansCILIATED PROTOZOANS
Ciliophora
These single-celled or colonial animals have tiny hair-like structures called cilia that are used for locomotion and to obtain food. They are a diverse group with many species and forms.

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DiatomsDIATOMS
Bacillariophyta
Diatoms are single-celled algae that produce ornate silicon (glass) cases with a box and lid design. They contain photosynthetic pigments to produce their own food. Deposits of diatom shells are the source of diatomaceous earth used in filters and cleansers.

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DinoflagellatesDINOFLAGELLATES
Dinoflagellata
These are single cells with both plant and animal traits. Some species have cell walls and cellulose plates. They have two whip-like flagella for locomotion, one in a central groove and another placed vertically. Some species produce toxins. Red tides are caused by dinoflagellates.

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EuglenoidsEUGLENOIDS
Euglenophyta
Euglenas and their relative are motile, single cells that also have both plant and animal traits. They contain chlorophyll like plants, but lack cell walls like animal cells. Some have a red eyespot and most are equipped with one or more whip-like flagella for locomotion.

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ForamsFORAMS
Foraminifera
Formainifera are also amoeba-like protozoa. They differ from rhizopod amoebas by having simple to complex, perforated shells that may be quite ornate and by having with one to many branched pseudopodia.

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Golden AlgaeGOLDEN ALGAE
Chrysophyta
Members of this group often occur as tiny single cells, with yellow-green or golden-brown pigments. They have two whip-like flagella for locomotion and a third appendage called a haptonema used for attachment. Golden algae can produce their own food and at least some prey on other organisms. Some produce potent toxins.

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Green AlgaeGREEN ALGAE
Chlorophyta
Members of this group range from small single cells to much larger colonies. As their name suggests, they contain green chlorophyll. Green algae are diverse and have an array of forms. Some types some have flagella for locomotion, but others are sessile and grow on other objects and even other organisms.

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Lower FungiLOWER FUNGI
Chytridomycota
These are among the most primitive species and row as simple fungal strands. They also differ from true fungi and molds by having swimming reproductive cells with flagella.

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PlasmodiaPLASMODIA
Apicomplexa
These are one-celled parasites that include the species that causes malaria in humans. Many have complex life cycles with multiple life stages. Some require one or more host species and certain species may cause the death of their hosts.

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Plasmodial Slime MoldsPLASMODIAL SLIME MOLDS
Myxomycota
Plasmodial slime molds usually exists as enormous animal-like, single-cells with thousands of nuclei. However, they can form mushroom like structures called sporangia and assume a very vegetative type of appearance. Sometimes species called slime nets are separated into a third group of slime mold organisms.

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RadiolariansHeliozoansRADIOLARIANS AND HELIOZOANS
Actinopoda
These two groups of amoeba-like protozoa have thin, unbranched pseudopodia that are stiff and radiate outward in some species and are used to capture prey and for locomotion. Some are called sun animalcules. Certain species may have perforated shells of silica or strontium sulfate that can be highly sculptured.

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Red AlgaeRED ALGAE
Rhodophyta
Red algae are often larger, multi-cellular colonies, but include smaller microscopic species as well. Most are marine, with a few living in fresh water. They contain reddish pigments that mask chlorophyll that is also present.

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Water FungiWATER FUNGI
Oomycota
Members of this group grow as mold-like filaments, but lack chitin found in the walls of true fungi. They also have swimming, flagellated sex cells, unlike true fungi.

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ZooflagellatesZOOFLAGELLATES
Zoomastigophora
These are one-celled or colonial animals that are much like euglenoids or Dinoflagellates. However, they lack chlorophyll o r other photosynthetic chemicals typical of plants. Zooflagellates have one or more whip-like flagella for locomotion or to circulate water containing food and oxygen.

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Blue-Green AlgaeNOTE: Blue-green algae (Cyanophyta) are now classified with bacteria because they lack a nuclear membrane.

Prepared by Robert G. Howells, TPWD

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