Glow­ing shark smells its way to prey

Science Illustrated - - BIOLOGY -

Al­though a new species of lantern shark "shines", the an­i­mal was first ob­served in 2017, off North-Western Hawaii. The 37-cm­long and 1-kg-heavy shark lives at depths of up to 380 m, where sun­light is only dim, so it has de­vel­oped an abil­ity to light up in the dark. The light can lead shrimps and small fish into a trap. The lights on the lower side of the shark cam­ou­flage the an­i­mal in the dim, gleam­ing sun­light from the sur­face. The cam­ou­flage might also pro­tect the shark from larger preda­tors. The new species is markedly dif­fer­ent from other lantern sharks. It has a con­sid­er­ably longer, pro­trud­ing snout. The long nose helps the shark sniff out its prey in the dark.

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