ISOLATION AND CHARACTERISATION OF MICROORGANISMS ASSOCIATED WITH DIESEL POLLUTED ENVIRONMENT
A study was conducted to isolate and identify bacteria and fungi associated with crude oil-polluted sites using traditional techniques. Environmental samples were collected from Awoye, Mese and Oluwa villages in Ondo State and three different flow stations (Agbada-Aluu shell, Obite and Bonny) in Rivers State. Pour plate technique was used for the analyses of microbial population. The bacterial isolates were identified by morphological and biochemical characterization using the taxonomy scheme of Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology while identification of fungi was based on the microscopic and macroscopic features of the hyphal mass, nature of the fruiting bodies and the morphology of cells and spores. The bacterial load of the Obite water was highest (33.00±1.0 CFU mL-1) and that of the Oluwa polluted water was lowest (10.00±0 CFU mL-1). Soil samples collected from Mese, Oluwa and Awoye had fungal counts of 15±3, 4±2 and 16±3 SFU g-1, respectively while the fungal population of the water samples varied from 8.67±2.1 SFU mL-1 (Oluwa) to 15.00±1.0 SFU mL-1 (Awoye). Seven bacteria each and fourteen fungi were obtained from Ondo and Rivers States. The advent of molecular biology in the 1980’s has no doubt provided new set of tools to identifying microorganisms to the specie as well as the strain of individual microorganisms. However, traditional techniques are useful especially in laboratories where there are no molecular biology facilities. Further research is necessary to assay for the degradative ability of the microorganisms.