Investigate the Giant Squid: Mysterious Cephalopod of the Sea
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Eye Spy!
Robin Wasserman 

How does an animal with no eyes see? Scientists studying a bizarre sea creature called the brittlestar, cousin to the starfish, have pondered that question for decades. Finally they've found the answer: The brittlestar doesn't have eyes it is an eye!

brittlestarUntil now, scientists thought the spiny, five-armed invertebrate (animal with no backbone) was blind. Although the brittlestar seems to have crystal-clear vision. It flees predators and scouts out places to hide. Scientists assumed its arms were the reason. Wrong!

Last summer, researchers studying a species of brittlestar called Ophiocoma wendtii discovered that the creature forms its skeleton out of smooth-faced crystals that work like a magnifying glass to collect and focus light 10 times as accurate as a manufactured lens!

(Image courtesy of Project Oceanica/NOAA)
   
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