Preview: Life in a Drop

June 10, 2014

Peter Neill

Recently via social media, the World Ocean Observatory received an astonishing photograph taken of a single drop of ocean water at 25 times magnification revealing the random inventory of life contained therein.

Water drop of life

The accompanying message lists the major identifiable species; what is so undeniably evident is the simplicity of these entities and the complexity of their metabolism and engagement in the larger process of the ocean as global accumulator of biomass and contributor to the health of the planet. What seems at first so understated and miniscul reveals on further consideration what is so amplified and essential about the ocean’s engagement with human life and survival. It is as if all the vast ocean is there alive in a single drop.

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