The psychedelic-looking peacock mantis shrimp (Odontodactylus scyllarus) has a decidedly brutish way of getting a meal: clubbing it.
This small (3 to 18-centimeter-long), solitary stomatopod wields two dastardly hammer-like appendages. At just 5 millimeters wide, each dactyl club can generate a force of 500 Newtons. That’s enough punch to shatter the glass of a standard home aquarium.
Their clubs are even vicious enough to bludgeon to death the already deadly blue ringed octopus, as you will see below:
The speed of its blows, which can accelerate to some 23 meters per second, create cavitation bubbles, which increase the force of impact on the target (such as “mollusk shells, crab exoskeletons, the skulls of small fish and the occasional weary fisherman,” researchers noted). These arthropods are also outfitted with some of the most awesome vision hardware in the animal kingdom. Instead of being equipped with three color-sensing pigments like we are, they have a dozen.
Learn more and see a video here.
[Excerpted from Scientific American]