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Foraminifera

For now I am side-stepping the issue of what classification the Foraminifera belong in. Wikipedia classifies the Foraminifera as a Class but mentions that some authorities consider it a phylum.

Most foraminifera (forams) live on the bottom of the sea where they build calcareous tests which are often multi-chambered. If multi-chambered, the animal itself lives in the outermost chamber and extends pseudopods to collect food that drifts past. Forams are ubiquitous in the oceans and four species have been collected from the Challenger Deep in the Marianas Trench. This is below the Calcium Compensation Depth so the tests are not made of calcium carbonate.

The pyramids of Egypt are made up almost entirely of foram-produced limestone.

 

Marginopora vertebralis Paper shell

Marginopora vertebralis Foraminifera

Marginopora vertebralis, paper shell, Fiji.

Marginopora vertebralis Foraminiferan

Marginopora vertebralis, paper shell, Fiji (dime provided for scale)

 

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