Our planet is full of creatures of all sorts of colors and patterns. Such conspicuous colors make their beauty inescapable to us. However, some of these living creatures are different. They choose to hide in plain sight. You’ll have to look closely to check these animals out as they are ghostly, glassy, and transparent.
Let’s discuss here the Top 10 transparent animals that make our planet all the more beautiful.
1. Glass-Winged Butterfly
Greta oto (glass-winged butterfly) is a brush-footed butterfly. The transparency of its wings results from the combination of three properties: first, from the low absorption of the visible light by the material constituting its wings, second, from the low scattering of the light passing through the wings and finally, from the low reflection of the light impinging on the wings surface. Adult glasswings can be found mostly from Central to South America as far south as Chile. They can migrate great distances and have been documented as far north as Mexico and Texas.
2. Juvenile Sharpear Enope Squid
A juvenile sharpear enope squid (Ancistrocheirus lesueurii) has a transparent body covered with polka dots of pigment-filled cells and below its eyes are bioluminescent organs. They can be found throughout the tropical and subtropical oceans, often at depths of between 200-1000 meters.
3. Transparent Juvenile Surgeonfish
The transparent juvenile Surgeonfish can be found in a wide range of waters including those around New Zealand. Believe it or not, it’s the same species of fish as Dory from Finding Nemo/Dory! They can grow up to 30cm (12 inches) long and are popular aquarium fish.
4. Translucent Pharaoh Ants Eating Colored Liquids
The pharaoh ant (Monomorium pharaonis) is a small (2 mm) yellow or light brown, almost transparent ant notorious for being a major indoor nuisance pest, especially in hospitals. The pharaoh ant, whose origins are unknown, has now been introduced to virtually every area of the world, including Europe, the Americas, Australasia, and Southeast Asia.
5. Macropinna Microstoma
Macropinna microstoma is the only species of fish in the genus Macropinna, belonging to the Opisthoproctidae, the barreleye family. It is recognized for a highly unusual transparent, fluid-filled dome on its head, through which the lenses of its eyes can be seen. M. microstoma has been known to science since 1939 but is not known to have been photographed alive until 2004. Old drawings do not show the transparent dome, as it is usually destroyed when brought up from the depths.
6. Tortoise Shell Beetle
The tortoiseshell beetle is not completely transparent, but it does have a carapace that is nearly invisible. The purpose of the transparent outer shell is to fool potential predators, as it reveals markings on its back that act as a warning. Tortoise beetles come in many different varieties, and the design under their clear shells can be distinct and beautiful.
7. European Eel
European Eels change colors several times throughout their lives. They start off transparent before turning brownish-yellow on their sides and belly. After 5–20 years in fresh or brackish water, the eels become sexually mature, their eyes grow larger, their flanks become silver, and their bellies white in color. In this stage, the eels are known as “silver eels.”
8. Juvenile Octopus
A juvenile octopus is just 2 centimeters wide and its internal organs can be seen through its transparent body. This one was spotted at night in the deep water off the coast of Tahiti. The orange spots on its tentacles change color and are used for camouflage.
9. See-Through Frog
Hyperolius leucotaenius is a species of frog in the Hyperoliidae family. It is endemic to Democratic Republic of the Congo. At one time thought to be extinct, in 2011 Hyperolius leucotaenius was found and photographed on the banks of the Elila River, a tributary of the Lualaba, during an expedition led by Eli Greenbaum of the University of Texas El Paso.
10. Sea Salp
Sea Salp is a barrel-shaped free-floating tunicate which is approximately 10 cm (4 inches) long. Sea Salp is able to move by pumping water through its jelly-like body. They are visible in most of the oceans, however, mostly seen in the Southern Ocean. It is mostly seen in deep waters and that too in large groups. It will be very beautiful if you see the whole colony of Sea Salp moving together in perfect synchronization. During the process of pumping water through its body, Sea Salp feeds on phytoplankton that is in the water.