Cephaloscyllium ventriosum is nocturnal shark species commonly found in the subtropical eastern Pacific Ocean. It is called a Sweel Shark because when it is threatened by a predator, it ducks under a crevice and gulps down water, increasing its diameter up to triple its normal size. Swallowed water is prevented from exiting the stomach by the cardiac sphincter, a ring-like muscle at the opening of the stomach. Once in a crevice, the overinflated Swell Shark is a really difficult meal to obtain.
Marine biologists will be donning this cool exosuit to study bioluminescence off the coast of New England this summer. The suit has eighteen joints that allow for flexibility, is equipped with highly-sensitive cameras, and allows for two-way communications with its base on the surface.
Who knew? This gorgeous oviparous shark species was discovered to be biofluorescent just earlier this year by the team here at Luminescent Labs. C. ventriosum grows to be about three feet long and is a nocturnal hunter — feeding on molluscs, crustaceans and bony fishes.
This is one of the first images of a seahorse showing off its biofluorescence. The team at Luminescent Labs reported this hidden trait in their January 8, 2014 paper, “The Covert World of Fish Biofluorescence." If only our favorite natural-history/surrealist filmmaker Jean Painlevé knew about this in 1934 when he was shooting "L’Hippocampe"…
Photo: Drs. David Gruber, Vincent Pieribone, John Sparks.
You don’t have to get out of the water—these sharks (Scyliorhinus retifer) are very small. The catshark was first witnessed to be fluorescent during an August 2005 research cruise in the Gulf of Mexico, but no photos were taken. This is one of the first images to capture this shark’s biofluorescence! Captured by David Gruber, Vincent Pieribone and John Sparks.
Frogfishes have the ability to change their coloration and pigment patterns in just a few weeks. But, a recent report by the scientists at Luminescent Labs also shows that they are biofluorescent. Much more warty frogfish studies to be done to get to the bottom of this phenomena…