Bobtail SquidSepiolida

The bobtail squid is a tiny creature (only about two inches long) that can be found in shallow coastal waters of the Pacific Ocean, some parts of the Indian Ocean, and on the west coast of the Cape Peninsula off South Africa. Hidden in the sand by day, it comes out at night to hunt. To avoid detection by predators from below, it harbors glowing bacteria on its underbelly to mimic the moonlight and essentially eliminate its shadow.

The bacteria are housed in a special light organ in the squid’s mantle, where the squid provides food in the form of sugar and amino acid solution. The squid uses filters in this organ to adjust the brightness of the bacteria to match that of the moon, essentially using the light as an invisibility cloak or, as one researcher put it, a Klingon cloaking device.


347 notes
tagged as: bobtail. squid. bobtail squid. saltwater. cephalopod. ocean. ocean floor. aquarium. fish tank. fish. tank.

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