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Diagnostic features

Unbranched blue-green cyanobacterial filaments with a helical twist. Crosswalls between cells are often hard to see. A fine mucilage sheath surrounds the filament, within which the filament may be motile. Heterocytes absent. Organelles absent from the cells, but granules may be common.

Typical habitats

Planktonic in ponds, including sewage ponds.


Kingdom Bacteria
Phylum Cyanobacteria
Class Cyanophyceae
Order Oscillatoriales
Family Phormidiaceae
Common name Cyanobacteria