Females of a species of squid can pretend they have sperm

Female squids of the species Dorituthis opalescenceAlso known as the California squid, they have resources: to ward off unwanted advances from males, they use a technique to change the color of their cells.

Immediately, an optical illusion is set up where these creatures can be identified by their rainbow stripes, making the men believe they have sperm, details. Science and Life, in an article published on May 13, citing data collected from American researchers at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Faced with this trick, the male squid leaves in search of another female.

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A protein that changes the incidence of light

This type of squid has all kinds of pigment cells in its skin called “chromatophores”. These cells can change color to allow the animal to easily adapt to its environment or a particular situation.

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And the researchers discovered that only the females of this species of squid can recognize these rainbow stripes by their intelligence, under their fins. The scientists, after microscopically analyzing the “chromatophores” of these scratches, discovered that they were filled with reflectance: a protein capable of changing the incidence of reflected light. Experts estimate that these cells are six times brighter than any other that the squid has been given.

Researchers have identified some kind of shiny white spots on the female squid’s body – made up of leucophore cells – that resemble male sperm. By implementing them, women can easily fend off the advances of their more aggressive male counterparts.

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