Your glowsticks got nothing on the natural beauty of bio-luminescence. According to National Geographic, an expedition in the Bahamas collected and studied bunches of deep-sea creatures that produce their own natural light. The Johnson-Sea-Link submersible dove 3,280 feet into the sea to gather groups of known bioluminescent species and a new hermit crab species.
One of the critters that the team observed was the shrimp Parapandalus. This little swimmer creates a glowing cloud of matter around its body to confuse predators.
This is one of the first extensive studies done on deep-sea bioluminescent animals. Through the research done at sea and back in the group's labs, scientists believe the different colors these creatures cast allow predators to color code their food. The hunter remembers what colors tasted good in the past and goes after creatures with that glow.
One of the animals being eyed by predators is the bright-eyed Gastroptychus Spinifer Squat Lobster, who only measures about 2.5 centimeters.
Another deep-sea night-light found by the expedition is a species of crab that has glowing bristles around its mouth. Scientists are unsure if this feature is unique to the animal or not, due to the lack of exploration near the ocean floor. The group hopes to go out into the area again, but has not been able to get the funds to do so.
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The team didn't just observe a light show on the deep sea floor; other bizarre events also caught their attention. Those in the submersible watched a squat lobster feast off a mysterious substance found on brittle star fish. Scientists believe that bioluminescent plankton may have become stuck in the starfish's textured legs.
While the group has learned plenty of new information on this expedition, all the members stress there is still much more to discover through return trips.
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