The Role of Surface Chemistry in Filter Feeding by Zooplankton

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Science  11 Jun 1982:
Vol. 216, Issue 4551, pp. 1225-1227
DOI: 10.1126/science.216.4551.1225


Surface chemistry of both particles and animals is important in filter feeding at low Reynolds number. Daphnia magna, fed mixtures of three sizes of polystyrene particles, retained particles that were smaller than the mesh size of the animals (1.0 micrometer) at greater efficiencies than predicted by a sieving model. Retention efficiency of the smallest particles (0.5 micrometer) was increased when negative surface charge on the particles was neutralized, and retention was decreased when a nonionic surfactant was, added to reduce wettability.