How to fool a shark using magnets

A simple trick allowed marine biologists to prove a long-held suspicion.

Credit: D Ross Robertson/Wikimedia/Big Think
  • It's long been suspected that sharks navigate the oceans using Earth's magnetic field.
  • Sharks are, however, difficult to experiment with.
  • Using magnetism, marine biologists figured out a clever way to fool sharks into thinking they're somewhere that they're not.
Keep reading Show less

New research reveals why some octopuses punch fish

"Don't tread on me" is a slogan of the deep sea, too.

Credit: pr2is / Adobe Stock
  • Octopuses are part of multispecific collaborative hunting groups with bottom-feeding fish.
  • New research shows octopuses defending their territory by punching fish.
  • The team believes this research helps reveal underlying game structures in the deep sea.
Keep reading Show less

Scientists discover slug that can decapitate itself, grow new body

The bizarre discovery could pave the way for advances in regenerative medicine for humans.

Credit: S. MITOH AND Y. YUSA/CURRENT BIOLOGY 2021
  • In a recent study, scientists observed two species of sea slug that were able to self-decapitate, survive for weeks without organs, and regenerate entirely new bodies.
  • The study authors proposed that the slugs are able to survive as severed heads because of the unique way they obtain energy from algae.
  • While other animals engage in self-amputation (known as autotomy) to avoid predators, the study authors suggested that sea slugs might shed their bodies to avoid dying from parasites.
Keep reading Show less

Cephalopod aces 'marshmallow test' designed for eager children

The famous cognition test was reworked for cuttlefish. They did better than expected.

Credit: Hans Hillewaert via Wikicommons
  • Scientists recently ran the Stanford marshmallow experiment on cuttlefish and found they were pretty good at it.
  • The test subjects could wait up to two minutes for a better tasting treat.
  • The study suggests cuttlefish are smarter than you think but isn't the final word on how bright they are.
Keep reading Show less

Unusual creatures uncovered beneath an Antarctic ice shelf

The organisms were anchored to a boulder 900 meters beneath the ice, living a cold, dark existence miles away from the open ocean.

Credit: Huw Griffiths/British Antarctic Survey
  • A new study details the discovery of sessile organisms living under the Antarctic's Filchner-Ronne Ice Shelf.
  • In recent years, scientists have discovered more creatures living in environments once thought inhospitable to life.
  • It's currently unknown how these new organisms find food in such an environment, nor how plentiful they are beneath the continent's ice-blanketed coastlines.
  • Keep reading Show less
    Quantcast