Brachionus plicatilis

Brachionus plicatilis

Brachionus plicatilis

Supervision of Dr. Thomas Schaarschmidt (DMM) and Martin Vinther (SNM).

This microscopic beng is a member of the group called ‘’wheel animals”, also known as rotifiers. Rotifers are an important part of the zooplankton, being a major foodsource and with many species also contributing to the decomposition of soil organic matter. They grow 0.1–0.5 mm long, and planktonic, meaning they swim freely.

Brachionus plicatilis is a euryhaline species, meaning that it can tolerate a wide range of salinity. It is possibly the only commercially important rotifer, being raised in the aquaculture industry as food for fish larvae. It has a broad distribution in salt lakes around the world and has become a model system for studies in ecology and evolution.