Introduction: Where Do Microorganisms Live?

For our BioGround Blog, our group decided to focus on different interior spaces around Grounds. People always notice the organisms present outdoors by sounds and sight, but do people know about the microorganisms that live indoors? You might not realize that microbes can live on surfaces for up to one hundred years. However there are many factors that contribute to their lifespan. Factors include humidity, temperature, and the type of bacteria or virus. For example, the stomach flu, calicivirus, can live for week on clothes and household surfaces at room temperature.

While these facts might seem daunting, there are ways to prevent the spread of these microbes and to kill them. Simple ways to prevent the spreading is to wash your hands, clean surfaces, and cover your nose when you sneeze. Microbes can spread out over three feet from just one sneeze!

We want to observe areas to see where we think the most microbes live. Our idea is to interview people to see how often they clean their interior spaces as well as simply observing spaces and the traffic through them. We decided on observing different areas including but not limited to, men’s versus women’s living spaces, Clemons, Alderman, Clark, kitchens, equipment at the AFC, dorms, buses, locker rooms and study places. The things to take note in these areas include how often they are cleaned, how often certain things are touched (like door knobs) and how often people seem to sneeze or cough.

Every team member will observe one area and our blog will show the results. We will also research typical microorganisms that could be found it those areas. Ideally, we would want to take specific samples from the spaces but due to limited resources this could be a challenge. Furthermore, our hope is to find more information as to what is living amongst us.


Post by Bayley Wood