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Cryptic Wonders: Enchanting Slime Moulds

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  • Westbury Town Hall
    26 Lyall Street, Westbury TAS 7303, Australia

Slime moulds... What are they? What ecological roles do they play? Why do they look so beautiful?

Slime moulds impress people when they see the beauty and intricacy of their miniscule fruiting bodies. Learn about their intriguing life cycle – at one stage they move about and feed. They can even find their way through a maze!

This exhibition will reveal a hidden world that was discovered in 2010 by a local naturalist. Large format photographs of slime mould and their microscopic details feature in the exhibition. A selection of specimens mounted in labelled boxes will be accompanied by images that reveal their details. Microscopes will be available to view specimens. ‘Biodiversity Panels’ depicting fungi, mammals, reptiles, invertebrates, plants with be displayed. The 'Biodiversity Panels' will include a brief overview of their biology and ecological roles.

The exhibition will open 10 am - 3 pm daily from 10 - 16 August.

Renowned wildlife biologist, Dr Sally Bryant AM, will open the exhibition at 2 pm on 10 August. This will be followed by a talk by Sarah Lloyd OAM. Sarah will describe slime moulds and their ecological roles. Sarah will also speak on how the wet eucalypt forest at Birralee is becoming known as one of the world centres of slime mould diversity. This talk will be repeated at 7 pm on 14 August.

Sarah's field work and microscopic examination of over 163 species, coupled with genetic sequencing by collaborators in Ukraine, Germany, Spain, and Switzerland are revealing the richness of the forest. With one new genus (Tasmaniomyxa umbilicata), 4 new species and many more yet to be described.

Location Information

There is a large carpark adjacent to the Town Hall.