Scallops are watching you with hundreds of eyes


Written by: Clare-Anne Canfield  

Published on Wednesday, July 18th, 2018 at 7:36 am EDT

Written by: Clare-Anne Canfield

Published:   


We're watching you     Photo credit: NOAA

Scallops can have up to 200 eyes and each has a tiny mirror that reflects light onto the retina above it. Researchers recently found that these eyes act like reflecting telescopes and are made up of tiny, square guanine crystals that look like tiles [1].

Scallops see rather well thanks to hundreds of these eyes. Some species of Bay scallops in Northern latitudes may live over 20 years [2].
Macro photo of scallop eyes   Photo credit: Mathew Krummins  



1. Biologically controlled crystal growth: the image-forming mirror in the eye of the scallop. Acta Crystallographica. Palmer et al. 2017. 

2. Project Oceanography. Scallop Aquaculture. USF Marine Science, 
       http://www.marine.usf.edu/pjocean/packets/sp98/scallop_1.pdf      
        Accessed 12/11/2017