This colorfully uncommon creature comes to us from the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It gets its name of peacock mantis shrimp because it resembles a mantis in the front with a peacock party in the back. It’s rather large eyes, floating above its head, are among the most impressive in all of creaturedom. They have 16 color-receptive cones which means they can detect 10 times more color than a human. As if that wasn’t impressive enough, they can also move each eye independently which helps them detect and avoid predators.
Though only about four inches long, they’re one of the strongest animals in the ocean. They’re quite the fighters and will punch their prey with the force of a bullet from a 22 caliber gun. As pretty as they are, they wouldn’t make a great addition to an aquarium because their punch is so powerful it could actually break the glass. A bit of homebody, the mantis shrimp doesn’t like receiving visitors and is extremely aggressive with intruders. Considering the lethal power of its punch, it’s best to avoid visiting a mantis shrimp without calling first. Though even then, it’s extremely unlikely your visit will be welcomed.
Some mantis shrimp species are rather romantic, meeting their dream shrimp and staying together for life, which is up to 20 years. These lovebirds share the same burrow, protect their eggs, and help each other in hunting. When particularly aroused during mating rituals, the mantis shrimp will start to fluoresce. This means, you guessed it, they have glow-in-the-dark sex, which more than qualifies them as an uncommon creature. I’m keeping track of all your suggestions, so if you have any unusual creatures you’d like to see doodlewashed in the future, shout them out in the comments!
About the Doodlewash
M. Graham watercolors: Pyrrol Red, Perylene Maroon, Cobalt Teal, Cobalt Blue, Quinacridone Gold, Neutral Tint and Titanium White Gouache. Sennelier L’Aquarelle: Opera Rose. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon black ink in a 5″ x 8″ 140 lb. (300 gsm) Pentalic Aqua Journal
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Creator of Doodlewash®, founder of World Watercolor Month (July), World Watercolor Group™, and host of the Sketching Stuff Podcast. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!