Perhaps you didn’t realize, like reader Gregory (who sent me the Science paper), that scallops have eyes. But they do indeed—up to 200 tiny eyes lining the mantle, each a millimeter across: about the size of an “o” on a printed page.
Here’s what the array looks like in the scallop Pecten:
And a close up of the miniscule baby blue eyes:
Why do they need them? Because scallops aren’t sedentary molluscs: they swim actively by “jet propulsion,” flapping their shells to get away from predators or to find new resting sites. To wit:
It’s been known for a while that these eyes probably involve mirror reflection of incident light onto a retina, but how that reflection was achieved wasn’t clear, except that the mirror probably involved guanine crystals (guanine is one of…
View original post 1,169 more words