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tardigrade : any of a phylum (Tardigrada) of microscopic invertebrates with four pairs of stout legs that live usually in water or damp moss — called also water bearMerriam-Webster   See also   OneLook


Tardigrades, also known colloquially as water bears, or moss piglets), are water-dwelling, eight-legged, segmented micro-animals. They have been found everywhere: from mountain tops to the deep sea and mud volcanoes; from tropical rain forests to the Antarctic. Tardigrades are one of the most resilient known animals, with individual species able to survive extreme conditions that would be rapidly fatal to nearly all other known life forms, such as exposure to extreme temperatures, extreme pressures (both high and low), air deprivation, radiation, dehydration, and starvation. About 1,150 known species form the phylum Tardigrada, a part of the superphylum Ecdysozoa. The group includes fossils dating from 530 million years ago, in the Cambrian period. — Wikipedia

Tardigrade (Encyclopædia Britannica)
Tardigrade (Biology Online)

Tardigrada, Water Bears (Tree of Life)
Water Bears, Tardigrada (One Zoom)
Tardigrada (Catalogue of Life)
Tardigrade (WolframAlpha)



Articles about Tardigrades (Big Think)
Talks about Tardigrades (TED: Ideas Worth Spreading)




Microbiology is the scientific study of microorganisms, those being unicellular (single cell), multicellular (cell colony), or acellular (lacking cells). Microbiology encompasses numerous sub-disciplines including virology, bacteriology, protistology, mycology, immunology, and parasitology. Eukaryotic microorganisms possess membrane-bound organelles and include fungi and protists, whereas prokaryotic organisms—all of which are microorganisms—are conventionally classified as lacking membrane-bound organelles and include Bacteria and Archaea. Microbiologists traditionally relied on culture, staining, and microscopy. However, less than 1% of the microorganisms present in common environments can be cultured in isolation using current means. Microbiologists often rely on molecular biology tools such as DNA sequence based identification, for example the 16S rRNA gene sequence used for bacteria identification. — Wikipedia

Tardigrades (Goldstein Lab, UNC Chapel Hill)




Subject: Tardigrade (Library of Congress)

Subject: Tardigrade (WorldCat)




MERLOT: Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching
OER Commons: Open Educational Resources


Microbiology (MIT OpenCourseWare)
Microbiology (edX)



Microbiologists (US Occupational Outlook Handbook)


Microbiology Society
American Society for Microbiology


Tardigrada Newsletter
Tardigrade (bioRxiv: Preprint Server for Biology, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory)
Tardigrade (EurekaAlert, American Association for the Advancement of Science)
Tardigrades (JSTOR)
Microbes and More News (Science Daily)
Tardigrade (Science News)
Tardigrade (Phys.org)
Tardigrade (NPR Archives)



Tardigrade (USA.gov)


More News …

Phys.org - latest science and technology news stories Phys.org internet news portal provides the latest news on science including: Physics, Nanotechnology, Life Sciences, Space Science, Earth Science, Environment, Health and Medicine.

  • Using the principles of evolution to defeat cancer
    on November 27, 2023 at 5:44 pm

    November 24 marked 164 years since the publication of Charles Darwin's revolutionary "On the Origin of Species," one of the most influential scientific books ever written. In acknowledgement, 24 November is known as "Evolution Day" or the quirkier titled "All Our Uncles are Monkeys Day." The Institute of Cancer Research feels bound to commemorate this important work that challenged, and eventually transformed, our understanding of the natural world.

  • Researchers characterize tardigrade species...
    on August 14, 2023 at 12:49 pm

    They're found on Mount Everest, in the deep seas, aboard the International Space Station and thousands of them have even crash landed and been spilled onto the moon. The microscopic water bear has a nearly unfathomable ability to survive in the most hostile environments. New research from the University of Copenhagen demonstrates that a wide variety of them also live in Denmark.

  • Successfully managing forests must include...
    on August 8, 2023 at 3:50 pm

    Half of the biodiversity in forests is unseen because it lives belowground. These organisms are miniscule in size, but their importance to the ecosystem is enormous.

  • Genome analysis of 46,000-year-old roundworm from...
    on July 27, 2023 at 6:00 pm

    Some organisms, such as tardigrades, rotifers, and nematodes, can survive harsh conditions by entering a dormant state known as "cryptobiosis."

  • Morphological comparison study helps explain...
    on July 6, 2023 at 1:18 pm

    A team of biologists and Earth scientists from the U.S., China and South Korea has uncovered clues to explain the unique physiology of the tardigrade (also known as the water bear). In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their analysis of tardigrade ancestors along with multiple tardigrade species.


Here are links to pages about closely related subjects.

Knowledge Realm

Terrestrial   (Earth)

Sphere Land, Ice, Water (Ocean), Air, Life (Cell, Gene)
Ecosystem Forest, Grassland, Desert, Arctic, Aquatic

Tree of Life
Microorganism Virus
Prokaryote Archaea, Bacteria
Eukaryote Protist, Fungi, Algae, Protozoa (Tardigrade)
Plant Flower, Tree
Cnidaria Coral, Jellyfish
Cephalopod Cuttlefish, Octopus
Crustacean Lobster, Shrimp
Arachnid Spider, Scorpion
Insect Ant, Bee, Beetle, Butterfly
Fish Seahorse, Ray, Shark
Amphibian Frog, Salamander
Reptile Turtle, Tortoise, Dinosaur
Bird Penguin, Ostrich, Owl, Crow, Parrot
Mammal Platypus, Bat, Mouse, Rabbit, Goat, Giraffe, Camel, Horse, Elephant, Mammoth
Walrus, Seal, Polar Bear, Bear, Panda, Cat, Tiger, Lion, Dog, Wolf
Cetacean Whale, Dolphin
Primate Monkey, Chimpanzee, Human



1.   The resources on this page are are organized by a classification scheme developed exclusively for Cosma.