Can bacteria be seen with the naked eye? Has anyone ever seen a virus? These a just a couple of the questions I have been asked over the years regarding the size of microorganisms. The spectrum of microorganisms includes a wide range of organisms that are too small to be seen with the naked eye.
I was recently asked a question about the potential source of Zygomycete fungi detected in a spore trap (direct examination) air sample. Zygomycetes are a type of fungi classified in the Phylum Zygomycota and include fungi important to air quality investigators, including Rhizopus and Mucor.
Recently, one of the most talked-about areas of microbiology concerns the establishment and activity of microbial biofilms. A biofilm is a collection of microorganisms contained in an extracellular matrix of proteins and polysaccharides (basically, slimy substances) that adheres to a surface, creating a protected environment for the organisms.