Story: Life in hot springs

Micro-organisms, Champagne Pool (1st of 3)

Micro-organisms, Champagne Pool

This close-up shows the edge of Champagne Pool in the Waiotapu thermal region, south of Rotorua. The pool has a water temperature of about 75°C. The orange material is sulfur (containing small amounts of arsenic and antimony), which has precipitated underwater onto thermophilic micro-organisms. The small, conical objects are called spicules. These are formed by numerous layers of micro-organisms that have become encased in fine-grained silica deposited from the cooling water. The blue-green patches are cyanobacteria and algae.

Using this item

GNS Science, Extremophile photo collection
Reference: DCP_0582
Photograph by Bruce Mountain

Permission of GNS Science must be obtained before any use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Bruce Mountain, 'Life in hot springs - Sinter', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 25 June 2022)

Story by Bruce Mountain, published 12 Jun 2006