본문내용The third group of archaebacteria (called halobacteria) are especially interesting because they color the salt flats of desert playas and evaporation ponds a spectacular pinkish-red. This is especially evident in Owens Lake in the arid Owens Valley of California. Owens Lake was once a vast blue lake, before it was drained (by diverting Owens River) to provide the city of Los Angeles with water. Today it is a pinkish-red, dry lake bed or playa teaming with salt-loving archaebacteria. Solar evaporation ponds in the salt flats along US Highway 395 sometimes become a deep vermilion red. A drop of brine contains millions of tiny rod-shaped bacteria swimming among cuboidal crystals of sodium chloride (NaCl). Two flagellated halophilic green algae (Dunaliella and Dangeardinella) are often mixed with the rod-shaped halobacteria. Although Dunaliella in some regions of the world is also colored bright red, the populations in Owens Lake are green. The bacteria thrive in saturated brine up to 30 percent salinity (9 times the salinity of sea water). They can also be found embedded in the thick, pinkish-red salt crust literally baking in the desert sun.
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