The Strangest Fish in the World – Cuttlefish

 In Animals

Fascinating Cuttlefish

The world’s oceans are filled with amazingly complex creatures, perhaps none more so than the cuttlefish. In addition to being able to camouflage itself in a range of environments, the cuttlefish is able to change color spectacularly when excited, flashing rapidly from yellow to red-orange and blue-green.

It also has a complex propulsion and buoyancy system (the latter similar to that used in submarines), and a sharp ‘beak’ which allows it to cut open flesh like a pair of scissors, so it can use its tentacles to tear out meat.

Cuttlefish blood looks blue-green because it uses the pigment hemocyanin to carry oxygen, unlike our blood which uses the red pigment hemoglobin. The cuttlefish has three hearts—one for each set of gills, and one for the rest of the body. 

And why would a cuttlefish need three hearts?

Hemocyanin can’t carry as much oxygen as hemoglobin so the cuttlefish needs a faster blood flow to compensate. This looks like “a Maker’s Mark!”

Staying neutral?

The cuttlefish is a bottom-dweller which often lies in ambush for smaller animals. For this way of life, it needs to keep itself at neutral buoyancy, so that it neither sinks nor rises. At first glance, it would seem sufficient for the Creator to have endowed it with a fixed overall density, so that its own weight was exactly balanced by the upthrust of the surrounding water.

However, if the depth changes, so will the amount of ‘lift’ from the water. Therefore in order to be able to operate at varying depths and water densities, cuttlefish need to be able to adjust their overall density so as to always remain ‘neutral’ in the water. The cuttlefish does this by an ingenious mechanism. The bony shell actually has many narrow chambers. If these were all filled with gas, they would give a lift of up to 4% of the animal’s weight. However, they are only part-filled with gas—the darker areas shown are where it is part-filled with liquid. The cuttlefish is able to pump liquid in and out of that section as needed to keep the buoyancy ‘just right’.

The cuttlebone is a unique structure which provides variable buoyancy so the cuttlefish can hover in different water densities. This is done by varying the gas to liquid ratio in the cuttlebone. Making use of gas in a liquid environment “screams” complex design!

It has eight sucker-lined arms and two prehensile tentacles (which can be withdrawn into pouches under the eyes), and mainly feeds on fish, crustaceans and other mollusks. It hunts in the daylight, catching nocturnal prawns by blowing with its funnel and jetting them out of the sand. Like an octopus, the cuttlefish produces ‘ink’, in this case a brown fluid called sepia. However, it uses this defense only as a last resort, preferring to rely on its extensive camouflage capabilities both to hunt prey and avoid its own predators, such as sharks and dolphins.

The cuttlefish has a skin comprising three layers of chromatophores (color pigment cells)—a bright yellow layer near the surface, under which is an orange-red layer and finally a dark base. Transformation from one color to another, which can take less than a second, is controlled by the nervous system. In just a few seconds, it can run a whole gamut of colors.

The cuttlefish propels itself using a series of spurts, drawing water into a compression chamber which it squeezes to jet the water out a funnel under the head. Direction changes can be made by swivelling the nozzle of this funnel, and narrowing the funnel controls speed.

Like a submarine, the cuttlefish fills tiny compartments in its cuttlebone with gas to help maintain neutral buoyancy. This helps the cephalopod hover above the ocean floor, because although it has a sophisticated propulsion system its large cuttlebone does not allow it to be overly active, or quick in the water.

The cuttlefish also has eyes which are similar in construction to human eyes, but evolutionists do not believe it has any direct evolutionary relationship to humans (i.e. there is no possible ancestor to both cuttlefish and humans which could have had such an eye). So this similarity is explained away as ‘convergent evolution’: the eyes of the cuttlefish and other cephalopods ‘evolved independently’ to humans. In other words, it is simply an evolutionary coincidence.

However, the similarity in the design of both the cuttlefish and human eye is easily explained—they had the same Designer! The origins of the amazing features of the cuttlefish can be more easily explained if we accept it as just another miraculous example of the work of the Creator.

Random Evolution?

Like every animal phylum (a major division of life), the mollusks appear with no ancestors in the so-called Cambrian rocks. (A hypothetical archimollusc is set forth as the ancestor of all mollusks, but is not found in the fossil record.)3 The class Cephalopods appear in the fossil record in Ordovician rocks, again without evolutionary transition.

Encyclopedia Britannica says of the cephalopods, ‘Phylogenetic [evolutionary] linkages are still highly theoretical …’.The order sepioids appears in rocks no lower than the Jurassic system, again with no transitions leading to them. It is possible that all fossil and living sepioids may be the descendants of one ancestral created kind, based on the structural variation described in fossils.


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