Microbiological study of the dripping waters in Altamira cave (Santillana del Mar, Spain)
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The culturable microbial populations in dripping waters from Altamira cave were studied and compared with those of the ceiling rock. Water communities have low proportions of gram-positive bacteria, and are mainly composed of gram-negative rods and cocci (Enterobacteriaceae and Vibrionaceae), while those of ceiling rocks are mainly Streptomyces spp. The community differences are probably related to environmental cave conditions: high humidity, relatively low and stable temperature, water pH close to neutrality and nature of the organic matter. All these factors seem to favor colonization and long-term growth of actinomycetes over other heterotrophic bacteria on ceiling rocks.
Dripping Water, Enterobacteriaceae, Vibrionaceae, Streptomyces, Crystal Formation
Journal of Microbiological Methods, Vol. 36, no. 1-2 (1999-05-01).
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Laiz, L.; Groth, I.; Gonzalez, I.; and Saiz-Jimenez, C., "Microbiological study of the dripping waters in Altamira cave (Santillana del Mar, Spain)" (1999). KIP Articles. 3186.