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How beauty was found in a slimeball

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You might not think something wonderful can be found in a ball of slime -- but Ralph Grimm's prize-winning video of the creatures living in a bit of pond scum proves it's possible. Grimm's microscopic view of a colony of rotifers, complete with googly eyespots, won first prize in this year's Olympus BioScapes Digital Imaging Competition. More than 2,000 pictures of tiny life-science subjects were submitted from all over the world -- and today Olympus announced that Grimm led the top-10 list. You can see all 10 prize-winners, plus a selection of the entries receiving honorable mentions, in our slideshow. Grimm, a 45-year-old high-school teacher from the Australian town of Jimboomba, says he found the microscopic colony in a bit of drab-looking leaf debris that he dredged up from a pond on his property. 'They look very plain,' Grimm told me. 'They look like slimeballs.

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