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Bacteria are minute organisms that occur everywhere, both within and outside of other animals. While some are hazardous, the majority are beneficial.

In addition to sustaining plant and animal life, they are utilized in the industrial and medical sectors.

Despite their poor reputation, they accomplish a great deal of good! Let’s learn 35 mind-blowing bacteria facts for kidstoday. 

Bacteria Facts for Kids 1-7

a bacterium

1. Bacteria and their cousins, archaea, outweigh all other living forms on Earth by a factor of around 5 million trillion trillion.

2. Bacteria are unicellular creatures. This indicates that they consist of a single cell.

3. Lined up end to end, they would reach around 10 billion light-years, or from here to the visible universe’s edge.

4. The ocean-dwelling bacterium Pseudomonas natriegens may progress from birth to reproduction in under 10 minutes.

A single cell may possibly produce over one billion children in less than five hours.

5. At least 3.5 billion years have passed, making bacteria the oldest known form of life on Earth.

6. In 1674, however, the Dutch scientist Antonie van Leeuwenhoek observed swimming “animalcules” while tinkering with the newly developed microscope.

7. He discovered them while analyzing pond water and human mouth scrapings.

Bacteria Facts for Kids 8-14

bacteria culture - bacteria facts for kids

8. The majority of microorganisms remain unidentified. J. Craig Venter, a geneticist, began trawling the oceans and analyzing the water in 2003.

On his first expedition, he extracted over a million previously unseen bacterial genes.

9. The first artificial life form will be a bacterium, not a robot. Venter is leading an endeavor to create a bacterium from scratch, as he is unsatisfied with finding natural microorganisms.

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10. There are 10 times more bacterial cells than human cells in the human body.

11. E. coli can move 25 times their own length in one second by whipping their tails, which is equivalent to a horse running 135 miles an hour.

12. Bacteria have even built up permanent camps inside human cells. Mitochondria are the offspring of bacteria that were consumed by larger microbes billions of years ago.

Mitochondria provide energy to practically every cell in the body.

13. When you take medicine to kill a bad bug, you also kill some good ones.

Clostridium difficile can enter the intestinal area cleared by antibiotics, resulting in excruciating inflammation and diarrhea

14. Bacteria are adept at generating drug resistance. MRSA is one of the most lethal resistant bacteria; it killed 19,000 Americans in 2005 alone.

Bacteria Facts for Kids 15-21

illustration of drug resistant bacteria by CDC

15. MRSA’s lethality derives in part from a class of compounds known as carotenoids, which it employs to combat our immune system.

Ironically, many healthful fruits and vegetables include carotenoids, which may lessen the risk of cancer.

16. However, the majority of bacteria are harmless, and some even benefit in digestion.

Mice without intestinal microbes must consume 41 percent more calories than their germy counterparts.

17. Floating bacteria are extraordinarily adept at inducing condensation, which results in snow and rain.

To end droughts, some scientists propose spraying bacteria into the clouds.

18. Certain microorganisms flourish in harsh environments. In 2006, an investigation at a South African gold mine uncovered bacteria surviving on the energy released by radioactive rocks approximately two miles deep.

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19. Another species, Deinococcus radiodurans, can withstand over 10,000 times the level of radiation that would kill a human, making it an ideal option for nuclear waste remediation.

20. Scientists from Australia discovered that the bacterium Ralstonia metallidurans may transform dissolving gold into solid nuggets.

21. But are bacteria able to run Windows? Scientists have developed E. coli that assemble into fluorescent bull’s-eye shapes on command by putting instructions into their genes.

Bacteria Facts for Kids 22-28

magnifying glass and pathogen bacteria

22. Bacteria are the oldest known form of life on Earth, having existed for more than 3.5 billion years.

23. Typically, a bacterium may travel 100 times its body length every second.

In comparison, a huge fish can move almost 10 times its body length in the same amount of time.

24. They aid in functions such as digestion and protect the body from harmful germs.

Less than one percent of the world’s microorganisms can get you sick.

25. Numerous snacks, including Yogurt, Dosa, Cheese, Idli, Kimchi, and miso, are produced using microorganisms. Not to worry, it’s perfectly safe!

In fact, the microorganisms used in the production of these foods are extremely excellent for gut health.

26. Rapid bacterial adaptation makes it difficult to develop an antibiotic that will continuously be effective. When antibiotics are overused, germs might develop resistance.

This is why persons with a lengthy history of antibiotic use should get their homes tested for the presence of dangerous germs.

27. Various bacteria can thrive in a range of harsh environments – from ice to hot springs and even radioactive waste.

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28. Did you know bacteria are the oldest known form of life on Earth?

According to scientific research, bacteria have existed for more than 3.5 billion years, which is longer than any other life form on Earth.

Bacteria Facts for Kids 29-35

microorganisms under microscope - bacteria facts for kids

29. There are several species of bacteria in the globe, but the five most common types may be differentiated by their form and the structure of their cell walls.

30. Spirochaetes are corkscrew-shaped bacteria that are subdivided into three species (Treponema, Leptospira, and Borrelia), each of which can cause particular diseases.

31. Rickettsia are bacteria belonging to the family Rickettsiaceae that can only exist inside other living cells.

32. Mycoplasma are bacteria devoid of a cell wall. These can induce infection in humans.

33. Cocci are spherical cells with strong cell walls that are gram-positive due to their ability to absorb the Gram stain.

Those with thin cell walls are known as gram-negative bacteria.

34. Bacilli consist of two orders, Bacillales and Lactobacillales, which contain some popular pathogens like Bacillus anthracis and are virtually entirely gram-positive bacteria.

35. Approximately 2 kilograms (4.4lb) of bacteria reside in and on the human body.

Sources: 1, 2, 3

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