Colony: Definition, Meaning, and Examples

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Colony Definition

• A group of organisms (usually of the same species) that live in close proximity to one another.

• A bacterial colony is a cluster of identical cells (clones) on the surface of (or within) a solid medium, often produced from a single parent cell.

What is Colony?

In biology, insect colonies are common examples of colonies. An ant colony, for example, is made up of ants who dwell close together for mutual benefits, such as greater defense.

Coenobium, a single-celled Volvox species colony, is an example of how single-celled organisms may form colonies.

When bacteria are cultivated in a solid medium, they form colonies. Because they are all descended from a single parent cell, the colony is actually (and ideally) a collection of bacterial clones.

The word colonia comes from the Latin word colonia.

Colony Citations


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