When an amoeba wants to eat a food particle, it extends a long, variably shaped structure around the item and engulfs it whole. These long structures are called pseudopodia, and amoeba can make and adjust them as necessary to move or capture food. Once inside the cell’s protoplasm, the amoeba’s vacuoles digest the food item.
Amoebas are primitive, single-celled organisms, or protists. Most are microscopic, although a few species grow large enough that they are visible to the unaided eye. Amoebas are aquatic creatures, though their small size allows them to live in minuscule amounts of water. Lakes, rivers, puddles, irrigation ditches and swamps all host amoebas, but some species Even live inside the blood or body fluids of other animals. Many amoebas attach to a stable substrate in their habitat, while others float about freely.
There are many different species of amoebas in the world, and each species is adapted to its individual habitat. Amoebas primarily consume algae, bacteria, other protozoa, and bits of dead plants and animals. The primary predators of amoebas are filter feeds, such as clams.
Amoebas reproduce by splitting into two different creatures. This process is called binary fission and represents a form of asexual reproduction.