CreatureCast Episode One: Squid Colors

Some clever people have gotten themselves a grant from the National Science foundation to make awesome hand-drawn cartoons of animals to pair with conversational interviews with scientists explaining their research.  It’s kind of like if This American Life was a charmingly low budget biology vlog.  It’s called Creature Cast, it’s creative commons attribution-noncommercial-share alike, and you can follow along with the episodes and related postings on the Creature Cast blog.  The first episode is about the colors of the squid loligo opalescens, which you’ve probably eaten if you’ve ever had restaurant calamari.  The concepts are communicated clearly and the drawings are delightful.

CreatureCast Episode 1 from Casey Dunn on Vimeo.

And here is the best video I was able to find of some of the actual behavior discussed by the interviewed scientist.  It is a different species of squid, but I think the same principles are in evidence.

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  1. Neat, thanks for sharing!

    One of my prides and joys in my library collection is the book Cephalopod Behavior which covers some of the quirks of cephalopod coloration and the way the chromatophores work (in a general sense).

    My personal favorite trait is cuttlefish crossing their arms in front of their face when researchers or divers annoy them.

    This is a fascinating interview with Dr. Hanlon (author of the book): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mW4PbW893ik

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