What does protozoa mean?

1 Answer
Nov 14, 2014

The word protozoa means "little animal."

They are so named because many species behave like tiny animals. Specifically, they hunt and gather other microbes as food.

Protozoa mainly feed on bacteria, but they also eat other protozoa, bits of stuff that has come off of other living things (what's generally called organic matter) and sometimes fungi.

Most cause no harm but the best-known protozoal menace is Plasmodium , the parasite that causes malaria. This disease leads to about 800,000 deaths each year worldwide.