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Cultures

In order to study the behavior of amoebae it may be useful to culture them. When you don’t have a sophisticated laboratory at hand, this can be done simply by supplying the amoebae with water from their natural habitat. Another simple “pond” method, which I use successfully for larger amoebae, is following. I fill petri dishes with water from the jar in which I find amoebae. In each petridish I drop a boiled maize grain. When I find an amoeba with my microscope, I carefully remove the cover slip and wash the slide in the petridish. When everything develops well, you can see several or many amoebae within some weeks.  After some time, you need to make new cultures, because the old ones get polluted. Transfer some amoeba from the old dishes to the new ones. This subculturing can be done ones a month.
In this simple manner I had stable cultures for many years. Be aware of predators and remove them. This “pond” method is very useful in that amoebae can be kept constantly available with a minimum of equipment and attention.

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