The Many Eyes Of Scallops

Dec 3, 2017
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LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

I bet you think scallops spend most of their time just chillaxing (ph) on the ocean floor, that is, before they appear on your plate drenched in butter. But scientists have discovered there's a lot more going on with the bivalves than meets the eye. Actually, in the case of the scallops, it's hundreds of eyes. The scallop, it turns out, has a complex ocular system arrayed across the front of its shell - teeny-tiny eyeballs perched at the end of thread-like tentacles. Each eye features two retinas and a miniature mirror that allow for both central and peripheral vision. Dr. Benjamin Palmer from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel told The New York Times that scallop eyes may inspire new inventions, noting that NASA built X-ray detectors to study black holes based on the eyes of lobsters. Who knew your seafood plate was so visionary? Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.