10 Transparent Animals You Never Knew Existed

1. The Glasswinged butterfly

Greta oto (glasswinged 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.

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2. Juvenile Sharpear Enope squid


This is a juvenile sharpear enope squid (Ancistrocheirus lesueurii). Its transparent body is covered with polka dots of pigment-filled cells, and below its eyes are bioluminescent organs. They may be found throughout the tropical and subtropical oceans, often at depths of between 200-1000 metres.

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3. Transparent juvenile surgeonfish

This transparent fish is a juvenile Surgeonfish. They’re 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.

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4. 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.

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5. Tortoise shell beetle

The tortoise shell 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.

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