Information | DirtLand | Animal Pavilion | Snack Bar
Space Adventure | WaterWorld
To discover the many worlds of hidden microbes,
touch an environment in the map above!
Go to the zoo Information Booth to find out how to use this zoo.
Outline of the Microbe Zoo
shows textual outline of sections and specimens
The Microbe Zoo is available on CD-ROM.
Microbes inhabit almost every niche you can think of, from 20 miles beneath the Earth's surface to 20 miles overhead. They live at temperatures less than -20 degrees Celsius to temperatures hotter than the boiling point. Microbes thrive on a huge range of foods including oil and toxic wastes.
Most animals interact with microbes in important ways, and all animals, as well as all plants and fungi, depend on microbes for their survival.
Without microbes, eating would be a boring pastime. Many foods, including cheese, chocolate, tea, bread, root beer, and many others are processed by microbes. Explore this environment to find out what microbes you have been eating!
The Space Adventure pavilion has three main themes: speculation about extraterrestrial life and the forms that it might take, attempts to use microbes in creating closed-cycle ecosystems to support future space stations and lunar bases, and microbes in the atmosphere. Microbes relevant to these three themes will be featured in the Space Adventure pavilion.
Most of Earth's biomass lives in the oceans, and most of this biomass is microbes. Microbes are found in abundance in many aquatic environments, such as streams, puddles, ponds, lakes, rivers, swamps, oceans and seas.
The Microbe Zoo is part of the DLC-ME project which was developed by the Comm Tech Lab and the Center for Microbial Ecology at Michigan State University.