Three Years on Mt. Rainier

On to the main topic, the field trip for the class I am taking on Microbial Ecology…. We went to explore the mostly untrampled flora around Mt. Rainier. The primary focus, lecture-wise was pretty much on mycorrhizal fungi: how they work with trees and other plants to provide nutrients, and occasionally how they are parasitic or otherwise pathenogenic. However, we were also able to explore some bacterial biofilms, lichens (a symbiote between bacteria and algae), and a couple of “charismatic megafauna” in the form of a black bear and some deer at Paradise on Mt. Rainier.

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