Predation

Natural environments contain predators and parasites that feed on bacteria. Protozoa are predators and are found in natural environments. Protozoa feed on many bacterial genera. When bacteria multiply rapidly, new cells formed may replace the cells lost to protozoa grazing. However, if the bacterium is growing slowly and the chemical concentration is low, the cells eliminated by protozoa grazing will not be replaced. Hence, the species is suppressed or eliminated even as the total bacterial community is maintained. If the bacterium that is capable of degrading a toxic chemical is adversely affected by grazing, then rate of degradation of that chemical will also be affected.

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