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Scientists have spotted something magnificent in scallop eyes. Each of a scallop’s peepers—up to 200 in some species—contains not just one but two retinas and a curved, reflective surface made of flat crystals unique in the animal kingdom.
Recently, after eyeballing these eyeballs up close, scientists were surprised to find that these crystals are perfect squares fit together in a grid. In most cases, the DNA base guanine, which builds the crystals, grows in prisms, not flat squares.
For scallops to produce unusual square grids, scientists believe they must carefully control the crystal growth and placement. Each eye has a stack of 20–30 guanine sheets, creating a reflective surface like a mirror. Once light passes through the scallop’s retinas, it bounces off the mirror onto one of the two retinas. With this design, scientists think the scallop can even focus on multiple areas at once.
So why the jazzed-up eyes for such a “lowly” creature? Researchers aren’t sure, but they suspect these eyes allow scallops to view a wider area for food or predators.
One thing is sure: all creation—even scallop eyes—reveals the Creator’s attention to detail. We only need to open our eyes to see his glory.
Scallop eyes are some of the most complex in creation:
Article was taken from Answers magazine, January–February, 2019, 38.