How are microorganisms ubiquitous and live in diverse and dynamic ecosystems?
- List two keystone bacterial guilds in these environments: oligotrophic ocean, marshland soil, and agricultural field (or others).
- Describe an extreme environment where microbes can survive under conditions that humans cannot.
- Explain what adaptations have occurred in psychrophiles/thermophiles/halophiles, etc., that permit them to exist in their optimal environmental growth conditions.
- List the main characteristics of microbes that might be present in a given ecosystem, e.g., the animal gastrointestinal tract, the anaerobic mud layer at the pond bottom, etc.
- Speculate on what characteristics would be useful for a microbe to survive a move through interplanetary space.
- Discuss how metagenomics can be a tool to study microbes in situ and/or in extreme environments.