Biologists Studying Coral Accidentally Discover A Rare 'Glowing' Turtle

Sep 30, 2015 By Houston Barber

A team of marine biologists from National Geographic recently set off to the Solomon Islands to research the coral reefs there. Instead, what they found was a discovery that has lit up the scientific community, no pun intended of course. Lead researcher David Gruber noticed what he called a “UFO” swimming in the water late one night. The UFO turned out to be something Gruber and his team could have never imagined, a biofluorescent sea turtle. 

The turtle turned out to be a hawksbill sea turtle, an extremely endangered species. The newly discovered turtle is the first case of biofluorescence found in reptiles. This opens the door for a new way of looking at the phenomenon of bioluminescence. Gruber and his team hope to raise awareness for the endangered species and keep the small population alive.

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