Are We Really Evil?

I guess not. In 1999, a study led by Peter Herring found evidence that noted that shrimp eyes from heavily visited vents were opaque because the light-sensing tissues had been destroyed. The potential culprit? Large megawatt lights on submersibles. A new study, soon to be published in the UK’s Marine Biological Association journal finds these effects may not be detrimental to shrimp populations. According to the BBC news, the new study finds that the TAG vent site no population change was detectable when data from 1994 and 2000 were compared. This suggests that the shrimp can rely on other sensory systems to survive.

2 Replies to “Are We Really Evil?”

  1. Still, I can’t help thinking that if curious shrimps sent giant machines ashore that blinded large numbers of Americans (even by accident) there might be consequences. Like war.

  2. I just posted an article at my blog, The Other 95% about the vent shrimp eye for background.

    One thing to keep in mind is the frequency of visits to vents sites. The mid-Atlantic Ridge probably get the most attention and visits to the same sites more than a few times a month is really stretching. Other vent sites are visited a few times per year. While the bright submersible lights may be blinding, on a population level I doubt much harm is being done.

    But to learn more about this fascinating shrimp check out my article!

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