10 Amazing Bioluminescent Creatures Living On Our Planet
Nature came into existence because of a building block that was highly versatile, and this is why there is so much diversity in the natural world. Living beings were meant to adapt to the varied natural conditions so that life would survive anything external forces throw its way. Bioluminescence is one of those amazing natural phenomenons that has captivated the minds of biologists around our planet. This is nature’s way of seeing in dark places and it makes for quite a spectacle. Here is a list of 10 amazing being that utilize the power of bioluminescence.
This particular species of mushrooms is called the Panellus Stipticus. It actually glows so brightly that it can even be seen clearly in low-lighting conditions. You can actually purchase this particular specie of mushroom and grow it in your own home.
We have all seen fireflies glow in the dark when we venture into the woods or when we go camping. The giant firefly is the king of this species and very little information is actually available about this one so far. It is found predominantly in Thailand and you can actually see one lurking in the dark up to a 100 meters away.
Most of the bioluminescent animals that can be found in nature are actually just carriers of bacteria that produce light. Scientists are now able to capture this bacteria and use it as a natural form of light around the world.
Scorpions are actually not naturally bioluminescent, but they light up under specific conditions. They have a chemical in their exoskeleton that shines under ultra-violet light and pretty much acts like a defense mechanism.
Man-Made Bioluminescent Animals
We have actually understood the natural phenomenon of bioluminescence so well now that we are able to recreate it at will. Scientist have created something known as Green Fluorescing Protein, and when this is injected into other animals, it creates the same effects as bioluminescence. They have experimented this protein on sheep, monkeys and many other animals with amazing results.
The Aequorea Jellyfish can be found in North America and Asia and are one of the first beings on our planet to attain bioluminescence. They are extremely small and are not even visible when they are not glowing. They are also non-toxic so it is okay to interact with them if you ever find one in nature.
Dinoflagellates are actually protozoans that are behind the natural phenomenon known as the ‘red tide’. These dinoflagellates don’t glow naturally, but their glow begins whenever they are disturbed by swimmers or even the sea waves.
The firefly squid deep within the ocean floor and is a non-threatening breed of squid. It’s entire body is covered in photophores that produce light when it is swimming. They use this to camouflage when necessary and also to attract mates during mating season.
The Waitamo Caves in New Zealand are one of the most beautiful and unique caves in the world. The entire ceiling of this cave structure is lined by the larva of glow worms, making for one trippy view for visiting travelers.
North Auckland Worm
Terriswalkeris terraereginae, or the North Auckland worm, is a five foot long blue worm that doesn’t really glow in the dark. Instead, this worm leaves behind a glowing trail of mucus which has bioluminescent properties.