When It’s Too Dark to See, Make Your Own Light!

Written by on May 21, 2014 in Fish, Jellyfish, Marine Life
Bolinopsis infundibulum, a bioluminescent ctenophore.

Bolinopsis infundibulum, a bioluminescent ctenophore. Photo credit: NOAA.

In the deep, dark ocean where no light can reach, many organisms make their own light.

It turns out that bioluminescence, the production and emission of light by a living organism, is quite common in the oceans. All kinds of animals, from bacteria to sharks, use it to warn or evade predators, to lure prey, or for communication.

Marine biologist Edith Widder was one of the first people to film bioluminescent below the surface. In the following 2011 TED Talk, The Weird, Wonderful World of Bioluminescence, she discusses her studies and shares some amazing footage of glowing sea creatures. Check it out:

Copyright © 2014 by Marine Science Today, a publication of Marine Science Today LLC.

About the Author

About the Author: Emily Tripp is the Publisher and Editor of MarineScienceToday.com. She holds marine science and biology degrees from the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a Master of Advanced Studies degree in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography. When she's not writing about marine science, she's probably running around outside or playing with her dog. .

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