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What are the differences between faecal and non-faecal coliform? Give examples.

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Faecal and non-faecal coliform are two types of bacteria commonly used as indicators of water quality. Here are 10 differences between them:

  1. Origin: Faecal coliform bacteria are found in the intestinal tract and faeces of warm-blooded animals, while non-faecal coliform bacteria are found in soil, vegetation, and water.
  2. Source of contamination: Faecal coliform bacteria are indicative of contamination from human or animal waste, while non-faecal coliform bacteria can be present in the environment naturally or as a result of human activities.
  3. Pathogenicity: Faecal coliform bacteria can be pathogenic and cause disease, while non-faecal coliform bacteria are generally not pathogenic.
  4. Tolerance to environmental conditions: Faecal coliform bacteria are less tolerant of environmental conditions outside of the intestinal tract, while non-faecal coliform bacteria can survive in a wider range of environmental conditions.
  5. Ability to ferment lactose: Faecal coliform bacteria are able to ferment lactose, while non-faecal coliform bacteria may or may not be able to ferment lactose.
  6. Growth rate: Faecal coliform bacteria generally have a higher growth rate than non-faecal coliform bacteria.
  7. Presence in drinking water: Faecal coliform bacteria are not allowed to be present in drinking water in the US, while non-faecal coliform bacteria are allowed to be present up to a certain level.
  8. Test used for detection: Faecal coliform bacteria are detected using the membrane filter technique, while non-faecal coliform bacteria are detected using the multiple tube fermentation technique.
  9. Total coliform count: The total coliform count includes both faecal and non-faecal coliform bacteria, while the faecal coliform count only includes faecal coliform bacteria.
  10. Examples: Examples of faecal coliform bacteria include Escherichia coli and Enterobacter aerogenes, while examples of non-faecal coliform bacteria include Klebsiella pneumoniae and Citrobacter freundii.
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