A marine flagellate of the order Silicoflagellida, distinguished by a siliceous skeleton and radiating spines.
- Those that can form silica skeletons, such as the diatoms and silicoflagellates, or skeletons of calcium carbonate, such as the coccolithophorids, may be extremely abundant in the fossil record.
- Silica is also extracted from sea water by phytoplankton such as diatoms and silicoflagellates, by zooplankton such as radiolarians, and by siliceous sponges.
- Silica is also precipitated by radiolarians, silicoflagellates, horsetails and grasses.
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