Strange animals that glow in the dark

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When the sun goes down, the creatures of the night come out: And some have really weird and incredible built-in ways to keep the lights on. The scientific term is Bioluminescence -- or the production and emission of light by a living organism.

From a giant squid that shines light on its prey before attack to a fish that oozes glowing slime to a few scientific creations, here are some really strange creatures that glow in the dark.

Black Dragonfish

The black dragonfish (Idiacanthus atlanticus) lives about 6,600 feet below sea level, in the subtropical and temperate marine waters of the southern hemisphere. While both the male and larger female black dragonfish have light-producing organs or photophores within their long, slender bodies, only the female has a chin barbel -- a strange protrusion coming from her chin -- with a luminous tip, used to attract unsuspecting prey. The fang-like teeth finish the job.

The male, on the other hand, seems rather under-equipped -- he has no teeth or chin barbel, comes in a musty shade of dark brown instead of black, has a non-functional gut, and grows to a maximum length of 2 inches -- compared to 16.

Photo Peter Shearer, National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research via

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