Bacteria, Viruses, and Protists

Bacteria Basics

Are all types of marine bacteria found in all oceans?

Although it has been said that all types of marine bacteria are distributed everywhere, this is not true. For example, in 2013, scientists found a “bipolar” species of bacteria that occur in the Arctic and Antarctic—but not anywhere else. The scientists who discovered this believe that these bacteria are more selective, with other studies showing that marine bacteria can be found in certain ocean currents on the Equator heading to other water masses. Because marine bacteria seem to have “living preferences,” a warming climate like ours that affects temperature, salinity, pH levels, and circulation patterns in the oceans may also affect the distribution of these creatures. Because many bacteria are essential catalysts for chemical reactions, variations in climate could possibly change other aquatic organism populations in response.


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