5 Animals That Glow In The Dark

Did you know that certain animals can glow in the dark? Yes, isn’t that simply amazing?!

In this article, we will look at 5 different animals that glow in the dark. We will also see how they do it!

If you want to find out more, keep reading below!

5 Animals That Glow In The Dark

1. GFP Axolotl

Axolotls are a type of salamander native to freshwater lakes in Mexico City.

Axolotls have an amazing ability to regenerate certain body parts.

For this reason, scientists have been carrying out research on axolotls to understand how they achieve this extraordinary feat.

As part of their experimentation, scientists altered the DNA of certain axolotls to introduce a gene capable of triggering the synthesis of a special protein called the “green fluorescent protein”.

This protein glows when exposed to UV lighting.

This is how the famous glow in the dark axolotl was created!

2. Fireflies

Fireflies, also called lightning bugs, is actually a generic term given to any one of over 2000 types of light-emitting beetles.

They’re without a doubt the most famous type of glowing animal.

Most fireflies are nocturnal and can often be observed at night.

During their breeding season in the summer months, they emit light and fly around to attract mates!

3. Anglerfish

The anglerfish is a deep-sea, bony fish.

Female anglerfish are characterized by a fishing pole-shaped, bioluminescent protrusion at the top of their skull, large mouth, and terrifying teeth.

Anglerfish use their light-emitting protrusion to attract curious prey in the pitch-dark depth of the ocean.

I for one would NOT like to meet one of those creatures!

4. Firefly squid

Another bioluminescent creature to inhabit our oceans is the firefly squid also called the sparkling enope squid.

This species of squid is relatively small when compared to other squid species – measuring only 3 inches.

However, whatever this squid lacks in size it definitely makes up for in the bling department! Indeed,  this animal owes its name to the flashing lights on its body that resemble those of a firefly.

Each year off the coast of Japan, millions of firefly squid gather to spawn and put on a beautiful light show that illuminates the oceans in the process!

5. Blue Jellyfish

The blue jellyfish, known by the scientific name Aequorea australis, is a type of jellyfish that produces not one, but five different fluorescent proteins!

The creature was discovered in 2017in the beautifully clear waters on the southern end of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.

it was taken back to a lab where its genome was analyzed. Scientists discovered that it carries genes for the synthesis of a wide array of bioluminescent proteins which allow it to glow in the dark!


In this article, we took a look at 5 animals that have the ability to glow in the dark. However, there are many many more. In particular, its believed that the majority of bioluminescent animals live at extreme depths in our oceans. We know very little about the types of creatures that live at those depths, so it’s reasonable to expect that many more amazing glow-in-the-dark creatures will be discovered as we continue to explore our ocean bottoms.

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