Microlife is not a taxon or a scientific category.  It is a term used to refer to a large, very diverse group of microscopic organisms, from plants to animals and species in between. For convenience, Splash groups bacteria, algae (plants), protozoa and rotifers into the category of “Microlife.”  Each of these subgroups includes thousands of species, only a few of which live in vernal pools.

Many of these microscopic creatures have been on the planet for millions or billions of years.  Some of their DNA appears in the DNA of humans!  Many species have not yet been described or named by scientists.

While we might refer to them as simple lifeforms, there is nothing simple about their lives.  As you read about them and watch the videos of them hunting, you will discover how much microscopic life is going on without our even noticing!   A microscope is a window into an otherwise invisible world.  Splash gives kids a ticket to that show.


Most Algae, but not all, are considered plants. They live in water and come in many shapes, sizes, & colors. Algae get energy from sunlight.


Bacteria are black or clear unless you stain them with special dyes to see them better.  Bacteria are made up of one cell.  It can...


Detritus is all the dead stuff that sinks to the bottom of a vernal pool.  It contains pieces of dead plants, dead animals and animal...


Protozoa are single-celled animals that come in many shapes and sizes.  The most common shapes are round, oval, bell-shaped and


Rotifers are the smallest animals.  Their outer coat looks like clear glass.  Sometimes this glassy coat is covered with spines or