Amoeba Inquiry

This amoeba was found in Loughborough Lake north of Kingston, Ontario, Canada.


  • How does this single-celled critter move?
  • Can you think of other types of movement that are similar to the one you see here?
  • For what reasons do you think this critter needs to move?
  • Can you find any cycles in the video? How do these cycles compare to other cycles you know about?
  • What is the advantage to the amoeba for having the shape of a kind of flattened and extended sphere? How does this critter use its shape?
  • In the high magnification video, look at spheres near the rear end of the amoeba. Can you see them quickly disappear, then re-appear in a few seconds? What do you think is happening here?
  • What else can you find out about this organism?


Amoeba comes from the Greek word, amoibe, which means change.

-a probably is a shortened form of -al, which means of, relating to, or characterized by

So, amoeba means a critter that changes shape (or characterized by its ability to change shape).

More Information:

Go to the amoeba page for more information on these organisms.

Posted by Jeff Bloom, 9 November, 2010


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