Euglena is commonly studied in biology classes because it has both plant (it has chloroplasts and so can photosynthesise) and animal (it moves and can eat) characteristics. Depending on conditions, photosynthesis or eating can predominate. It is a single celled creature (a PROTIST) with a large flagellum that lives in fresh water. It is generally elongate but can change its shape quite dramatically during so-called euglenoid movement. It swims using its flagellum and can orientate itself with respect to gravity and light.

Euglena Structure: Euglena has a spiralised outerpellicle visible in this graphic as a helical surface reflection. At the anterior of the organism, the surface invaginates forming a canal which expands into areservoir. Emerging from the reservoir is a longflagellum (there is a smaller secondary flagellum that does not reach the exterior). Attached to the major flagellum is the paraxonemal body which is light sensitive. Partially shading it (and in so doing providing orientation with respect to the light source) is the redeye spot or stigma. Near the reservoir lies thecontractile vacuole which expels excess water into the reservoir (a process called osmoregulation).Chloroplasts are dotted througout the cell, their positions optimised to collect the most light. These chloroplasts were originally free living creatures that were incorporated in the distant past. The chloroplasts have characteristic pyrenoids. Starch is stored asparamylon. Paramylon reserves are shown as pale straw coloured bodies. There is a nucleus with a distinct nucleolus.

Euglena are interesting because they are a sort of combination of plant and animal. They can make their own food like a plant, but they can also eat other things, like an animal. They can also swim and move. Scientists argued for years about which Kingdom to put them in, Animal or Plant? Right now they are in neither; most scientists put them in the Protist Kingdom with other microscopic organisms, such as amoeba and paramecium.


Vive in acqua dolce e presenta flagelli per la locomozione e un fotorecettore chiamato macchia oculare. È dotata di un vacuolo contrattile per stabilizzare l'effetto dell'osmosi. In mancanza di luce, è in grado di passare dalla nutrizione autotrofa a quella eterotrofa.


L'euglena è un organismo unicellulare dotato di cloroplasti per la fotosintesi e di un flagello per la locomozione. Una macchia oculare capace di percepire la luce le permette di orientarsi nel suo habitat individuando le fonti luminose.


The euglena is unique because it is sort of like a plant and also like an animal. It is pear shaped. It has a whippy tail called a flagellum that allows it to move through the water.The euglena is different than other protozoans because it has chlorophyll in it, the substance that plants contain to make their own food. The euglena is then able to make its own food like a plant when it is in the sunlight. When it is in darkness, however, it can get food like an animal. It takes in tiny plants and animals much like the ameba and paramecium.The euglena has a bright red eyespot which is sensitive to light and helps the euglena find light.The euglena reproduces by fission, splitting lengthwise in two. The flagellum goes with one part and the other part grows a new flagellum.When it is too hot or cold for a euglena, it forms a protective casing called a cyst around its body that protects it until conditions outside the cyst become better.