Handyman Chicago News Gallery

Tue, Sep-29-2015 02:17:21

‘Glowing’ sea turtle


Marine biologists made a shocking discovery while filming biofluorescence in small sharks and coral reefs around the Solomon Islands recently. Out of nowhere, a “glowing” sea turtle came swimming by. The critically endangered hawksbill sea turtle, glowing in neon green and red, is the first reptile scientists have seen exhibiting biofluorescence. Biofluorescence is different from bioluminescence, in which animals either produce their own light through a series of chemical reactions, or host bacteria that give off light. Corals fluoresce, and recent research has found the ability in a number of fish, sharks, rays, tiny crustaceans called copepods, and mantis shrimp. But researchers never expected to find it in a marine reptile… The marine biologist captured the turtle sighting on a video camera system, whose only artificial illumination was a blue light that matched the blue light of the surrounding ocean. A yellow filter on the camera allowed the scientists to pick up fluorescing organisms.