Manually picking colonies can be time-consuming and inefficient, not to mention boring! When colony picking becomes the bottleneck in your lab’s research, it’s probably time to consider an automated colony picker. However, throughput alone is not the only benefit of an automated colony picker.

Reduce human error

Hold off getting more students in to hand-pick your colonies and use a colony picker that picks the same every time. With automation, the process becomes more precise and consistent, ensuring that each colony is picked accurately and consistently across multiple samples. This not only reduces the chances of errors but also enhances the reliability and reproducibility of your results.


Automation reduces the chance of cross-contamination, especially when the samples are contained within the picker. Pickers with a unique single-use polymer line, acting as a picking head, also run without the need for washing cycles, reducing the risk of ethanol contamination. It can also enhance the safety of researchers if you’re working with hazardous or pathogenic colonies. By automating colony picking, researchers can minimise their direct contact with these colonies, reducing the chances of accidental exposure.

PIXL picking

Figure 2. PIXL picking yeast colonies.

Integration into your workflow

Well-documented application processing interface on a picker allows for seamless integration into workflows with other instruments, providing uncompromising efficiency. Some colony pickers can be used to accelerate anaerobic research if they are small enough to fit into anaerobic chambers. Also, compatibility with a robot arm makes for seamless walkaway time, run your lab during the day or overnight to pick thousands of colonies while you sleep!

Figure 1. PIXL colony picker in an anaerobic chamber, being used to study probiotic organisms.

Increase throughput

Manual colony picking can be a labour-intensive task, requiring you to spend hours under the microscope, carefully selecting and transferring individual colonies. Automated colony pickers are capable of picking thousands of colonies a day, allowing you to efficiently process larger sample sizes.

PIXL with Momentum_setup

Figure 3. PIXL with momentum. Find out why PIXL is chosen by scientists all over the world here.

Other workflows and tracing your data

Most automated colony pickers can also carry out colony counting and imaging. Make analysis easy by tracing your data with good software, and creating libraries of publication-quality images. Colony pickers compatible with barcode readers help to keep track of plates and their data, making sure you don’t lose any.

Upgrade your lab with an automated colony picker. High throughput, improved accuracy, and reduced contamination risk are just a few of the advantages that automated colony pickers provide.

Elevate research efficiency with an automated colony picker in your lab

Discover the perfect fit for your needs from our selection of colony pickers.