diatoms

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Diatoms are microscopic single-celled algae that are large contributors to the phytoplankton of oceans, seas and lakes. Together they are th single larges contributor of oxygen to the Earth’s atmosphere, and form an important base to aquatic food webs. Diatoms have evolved to have elaborate silica cell walls that reflect the types of habitat to which the particular species is adapted. Diatoms are abundant in nearly every habitat where water is found – oceans, lakes, streams, mosses, soils, even the bark of trees. Diatoms grow as single cells, or form simple filaments or colonies.

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