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Glassy Radiolarian Beauty

Radiolarian Shells
Ralph Claus Grimm / Nikon Small World

The shells of radiolarians rank among some of the treasures of the ocean, with their intricate, gorgeous geometry. The shells are made of silica, which protects the single-celled animals as they drift as zooplankton in the ocean. This image, taken at 120x zoom, was an honorable mention in the 2012 Nikon Small World photomicrography competition.