Yellowstone National Park in Park County, Wyoming — The American West (Mountains)
Hot springs create different water temperature environments for living things. Cistern Spring’s brown, orange, and green colors represent species of visible algae and bacteria, each requiring a different temperature environment. Only a handful of hard-to-see species of bacteria can live where spring water is near, at, or above boiling. As water gradually cools – by flowing away from its source – it creates lower temperature environments ideal for these colorful species of algae and bacteria. Remarkably, hardy communities of tiny, hot-water-adapted organisms can thrive in temperatures too hot for humans to tolerate.
Hot water bacteria have a value beyond beauty. Thermus aquaticus (shown above), found in some of the park’s hot water runoff channels, produces an enzyme used in DNA “fingerprinting” and testing for the virus that causes AIDS.
Erected by National Park Service.
Location. 44° 43.389′ N, 110° 42.242′ W. Marker is in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, in Park County. Marker can be reached from Grand Loop Road, on the left when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is located in the Back Basin section of Norris Geyser Basin. Marker is in this post office area: Yellowstone National Park WY 82190, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. Steamboat Geyser (within shouting distance of this marker); Echinus (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Echinus (about 700 feet away); Minute Geyser (approx. 0.2 miles away); Emerald Spring (approx. 0.2 miles away); Porkchop Geyser (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Porkchop Geyser (approx. 0.2 miles away); Norris Geyser Basin (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Yellowstone National Park.
Categories. • Natural Features •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on September 27, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 159 times since then and 36 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 27, 2015, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.