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Heleopera rosea
Heleopera rosea
Heleopera rosea, 140 µm long (Tirol, Austria) and 110 µm, encysted (the Netherlands)

Heleopera rosea Penard, 1890

Diagnosis: Shell compressed, but not so strongly near the aperture as in H. sphagni, composed mainly of irregularly arranged siliceous shell plates, with only a few quartz particles or diatoms added to the aboral region.  More robust and broader than H. petricola var. amethystea; corners of the aperture obtusely angular; shell vinous or rose-colored, lips yellow or sometimes light brown.

Dimensions; Length 90-135 um.

Ecology: Mosses and Sphagnum in swamps.

Remarks: Cash et al. (1909) suggest that variations in H. petricola species are such that they all tend to merge into each other. This suggestion is also supported by Hoogenraad and De Groot (1940). I think they’re right and that H. rosea is identical with H. petricola. I’ve seen many transitions. In one sample you can find the typical H. petricola and the colored H. rosea together, but all of the same size and shape.

Heleopera rosea
Heleopera rosea
These shells are fully composed of rough quartz particles. The shells are vinous colored, but without yellow lips as described for the type species. Mosses, Ecuador.
Heleopera rosea
Living specimen – Photomicrograph Angie Opitz
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