Plankton are the food source for the largest animal on the planet, the blue whale! Some of the most important organisms in the ocean are so small that you can't see them without a microscope - in some cases, a very powerful microscope!
Lingulodinium polyedrum is a single-celled organism belonging to a group of algae called dinoflagellates. It is armored, meaning it has a hard outer coating. Lingulodinium polyedrum forms cysts, or resting stages, as part of its life cycle. Another notable feature of L. polyedrum is bioluminescence – a blue flashing light is visible at night when water with high concentrations of cells is disturbed. This species is widely distributed in temperate and subtropical waters of coastal areas.