A note on the fibre-optic light-guides in the eye photophores of watasenia scintillans

  • M Kawahara
  • IG Gleadall
  • Y Tsukahara


A brief account is given of the anatomy and fibre-optic-like light-guiding properties of rod-like elements in the eye photophores on the ventral surface of the eyeball of the Japanese firefly squid Watasenia scintillans.
These light-guiding elements form a dominant proportion of the volume of the photophore (which is assumed to function in counter-illumination) and are aligned such that light from the bioluminescent core is directed in a
cone downwards from the eye. A coplanar arrangement of lamellae in the light-guides strongly suggests that the light passing through will be narrowly restricted both in wavelength and polarization. These features are discussed
with regard to other recent findings in this species.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1814-2338
print ISSN: 1814-232X