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The Cockeyed Squid Survives the Twilight Zone Thanks to Mismatched Eyes

Source: LiveScience/Laura Geggel - February 17, 2017 in Adventure

The Cockeyed Squid Survives the Twilight Zone Thanks to Mismatched Eyes
Photo: NOAA

As its name implies, the cockeyed squid has some peculiar peepers: One is small and black, and the other is exceptionally large and yellow. Now, scientists think they know the reason for the squid’s wonky eyes: They help the squid spy on prey and predators in the ocean’s so-called twilight zone.

By observing the squid in underwater videos, the researchers found that the creature used its large eye to look upward and its small eye to gaze downward, helping it keep a constant lookout for potential meals and threats surrounding it, the researchers said.

“Eyes are really expensive to make and maintain,” lead study researcher Kate Thomas, a graduate student of biology at Duke University, said in a statement. “You want eyes just big enough to do what you need to do, but you don’t want to have any bigger eyes, because then you are just wasting resources.”

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