MICSCAPE - Exploring the miniature world

Issue 300 : March 2021 (ISSN 1365 - 070x)      Monthly, next issue April 13th 2021.


Nematode in phase contrast.
Image by Christian Autotte.


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About Micscape

Micscape Contacts
Micscape Editor:
David Walker
Email: micscape AT ntlworld DOT com

Please do not contact the above for image permissions. Each article contributor retains the copyright to their material so should be contacted directly via the link in the relevant article. Thank you.

Comments on Micscape and contributions welcomed.
Contributions: Any modern format welcomed i.e. pdf. doc/docx with embedded images, or html + jpegs.

Our 300th issue since we started in November 1995. Thank you to all the contributors and readers to date who have supported the venture. Many thanks to my colleague Mol Smith whose concept of a free microscopy e-zine for enthusiasts worldwide was brought to fruition and carries on much hard work behind the scenes to keep this now very large site working efficiently.

My (ongoing) balcony experiment - Christian Autotte (Canada) describes and illustrates how small spaces can be used to provide subjects for microscopy studies. PDF

Spirillum volutans - Steve Neeley (USA) shares his studies of a large species of bacteria. PDF

A few reflections on life after stepping on an ant - Richard L. Howey (USA) shares an essay.

Topical Tip - Using F clamps for seized microscope focus dovetails using the Russian LOMO Biolam as an example - David Walker (UK).

Micscape Lite - contributors sharing their other interests

Product Review. Cochranes of Oxford 'Kubic Bubbles' kit designed by Dr. Cyril Isenberg - David Walker (UK).

From the archives, our 200th issue in June 2012

The stereo microscope. Part 1 - Introduction and background - Jordan Kreindler (USA) shares a new expanded 3rd edition of his review of this important instrument.

The Carl Zeiss Optovar - Fritz Schulze (Canada) discusses the design and use of this feature seen on many Zeiss microscopes.

Uncle Will: Another dimension - Peter Paisley (Australia) discusses and illustrates the work of William Joseph Norman, part of the Norman family of slide mounters. (In doc format.) Editor's March 2021 note: The now sadly late author.

A close up view of a Chinese Pagoda Primrose - Brian Johnston (USA) explores this striking plant on the macro and microscopic scale.

Mrs. Malaprop congratulates Micscape on its 200th issue - Richard Howey (USA) shares a fun essay.

Science Heritage Ltd [SHL] 'Study & Preparation of Antique Microslides' - Ian Walker UK) reviews the slide making kit offered by SHL to purchase which also forms part of their 'lecture/workshop for 17th, 18th, 19th Century Natural Science Micrology'. Editor's March 2021 note: The current availability of this kit outside of the workshop is unclear from the SHL website.

A mystery about micro-technique: Part 1 - Richard Howey (USA) investigates why a selection of prepared thin sections are mounted on thin mica.

Exploring the cultivated silk moth (Bombyx mori). Part 1: The forms and fine structure of the adult wing scales, a subject studied by Leeuwenhoek - David Walker (UK) explores an insect that was one of the earliest to be studied in detail. Leeuwenhoek's observations, including micrometric studies of the wing scale fine structure, were very accurate.

yearbookIn Focus: Mol Smith has been very busy liaising with contributors to prepare and publish Micscape Yearbook 2. It is now available from Amazon stores.

logoWorld Microscope Day, April 13th. Robert Ratford along with various microscopy societies have come up with an excellent idea to promote microscopy. A Facebook Group to cover the promotions has been set up. Official logo on the left. Quoting from the About text from the page:

This group exists to celebrate the development and use of the microscope. The term microscope was first used on the 13th of April 1625. Giovanni Faber coined the name ‘microscope’ for Galileo Galilei’s compound microscope. World Microscope day is the 13th of April. On the 13th of April 2025 it will be 400 years since the term was first used.

Googe Doodles. Microscopes do not feature often on their Doodles; a recent one celebrated the scientist's Dr Wu Lien-teh's 142nd birthday.

    We are delighted to receive contributions small or large from microscopy enthusiasts whether a novice or expert. If you have an image, tip or article, why not share it, this magazine is what you make it!








Look for that elusive article on our site:
Micscape Magazine past issues online
(read articles online using the original illustrated index for each month).
Article Library (browse articles by category)
Automated Search (a search engine for keyword searches in all articles)
Contributor index (a list of all Micscape contributors to date)
News - special notices - misc.

External links. Updated April 2020. Below are some of our favourites, which includes sites with extensive links and/or resources for the optical microscopy enthusiast.

External Microscopy forums: Places to discuss the hobby or to raise queries.
forums, galleries, articles on macroscopy and photomicrography.

groups.io (formerly Yahoo groups):
Amateur Microscopy
Diatom Forum
Microscopy as a hobby or profession
Wild Microscopes

Facebook groups:
Amateur Microscopy (>21000 members, very active). Also specialist groups e.g. for users of given maker's microscopes (e.g. Zeiss, Olympus, Wild, Vickers). Also try a Facebook Group search with keywords like microscope or microscopy to find these.

Microbe hunter the website ably run by Oliver Kim has built up a popular and valuable forum with help for both the beginner and more advanced user.

'Forum for marine, freshwater and terrestrial algae'. Access to Archives possible for non-subscribers.
Diatom-L 'Research on the diatom algae.' Access to Archives for subscribers only. Link was current March 2016. Many online diatom resources point to an outdated Indiana Univ. listserver. (With thanks to Rob Kimmich for the current link.)

Mikroskopie-Treff.de (Extensive German microscopy forum; some English categories.)
Mikrobiologische Vereinigung München e. V. Wide range of articles and resources in German.
Le Naturaliste French based forum and image gallery for micro / macro but open to non French speaking international contributors.

Other sites (also see Societies and Clubs page.)
Royal Microscopy Society Journal, 'infocus' and other resources for members and the community.
Quekett Microscopical Club Journal, Bulletin and meetings for members.
Light Microscopy Forum links and articles
Little Imp Publications public domain books collated by Steve Gill formerly on CD and now free on Micscape.
Mikroskop Museum German website with resources on microscopes / makers .
Molecular Expressions awesome optical microscopy resources
Dennis Kunkel's SEM images stunning images
Diatoms Ireland - resource site by Leszek Wolnik
Leitz museum an illustrated resource compiled by Robert Allen
Microbe hunter microscopy enthusiast website, forum and magazine edited by Oliver Kim
Microscopies online magazine and Forum for French speakers
Micrographia articles, projects for the enthusiast
Microscopy Today
journal with online archive
Modern Microscopy
online journal by McCrone Group
Fun Science Gallery projects, articles on optics in English and Italian.
Independent Generation of Research (IGoR) - Wiki style resource for citizen scientists to share their work.
Lens On Leeuwenhoek - extensive resource online by Douglas Anderson
Collected Letters of Antoni van Leeuwenhoek ('Alle de Brieven ..') transcribed and free online at DBNL.
A Cabinet of Curiosities a resource on Victorian microscope slides by Howard Lynk
Klaus Kemp's 'Diatoms' website - offers regional strews and arranged prepared slides of diatoms, an 8 form test slide, radiolaria, insect scales etc and prepares arranged slides on commission.
'Diatoms Ireland' resource by Leszek Wolnik
Historical makers of microscopes and microscope slides Brian Stevenson's extensive resource .
Victorian slide makers
Cambridge rocking microtome resources including manual
www.willemsmicroscope.com Dutch enthusiast Willem Cramer's website
David Jackson's Better Microscopy blog. Regularly updated free resources extending from his 'Better Microscopy' series of books.
Stefano Barone's Diatom Shop
sale of his own prepared and arranged slides of diatoms, radiolaria, forams and scales.
www.testslides.com website devoted to Stefano Barone's Diatom Lab test slides.
Darwin Biological a UK company for 'biological education' supplies. Including live cultures of protozoa and algae.
Microscopie van de Natuur Dutch microscopy resource site by Rolf Vossen.

parent site coordinator:
Maurice Smith

Microscopy-UK and Micscape - established 1995
Micscape is a free magazine for enthusiasts funded by Microscopy-UK and dedicated to non-commercial microscopy.
© Onview.net Ltd, Microscopy-UK, and all contributors 1995 onwards. All rights reserved. Main site is at www.microscopy-uk.org.uk