Life at High Temperatures

by Thomas D. Brock

Bacteria in Hot Acid Springs

© 1994 Yellowstone Association for Natural Science, History & Education, Inc. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming 82190.

Sulfur Caldron, in the Mud Volcano area, is one of the most acidic springs in the Park. It is rich in sulfur and in Sulfolobus, a bacterium that thrives in hot, acid waters.

Left: Some acid springs, like this one at Norris, are rich in iron, an energy source used by some thermoacidophilic bacteria. Right: Cells of Sulfolobus attached to a sulfur crystal under a fluorescence microscope.
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