Thursday, August 2, 2007

The Bacteria Whisperer

In April of 2003, I read an article in Wired magazine that absolutely floored me: "The Bacteria Whisperer." While the article's tag line is a bit frightening - "Bonnie Bassler discovered a secret about microbes that the science world has missed for centuries. The bugs are talking to each other. And plotting against us." (EEK!) - the part that got me excited was the information about the bobtail squid, which "lives in the knee-deep coastal shallows in Hawaii, burying itself in the sand during the day and emerging to hunt after dark. On moonlit nights, the squid's shadow on the sand should make it visible to predators, but it possesses a "light organ" that shines with a blue glow, perfectly matching the amount of light shining down through the water."

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