Nature gave scientists another idea for the perfect camouflage. The inhabitants of deep-sea open spaces already have such - in 16 species of local fish the ability to absorb almost all the light falling on them has been found. It turns out that while a person develops complex and expensive ultra-black materials, like Vantablack, they have been implemented in nature a long time ago and are much simpler.
The discovery was made by American scientists from Duke University. They discovered in a number of fish that live at depths of 300 m and below, where sunlight no longer penetrates, a unique ability to camouflage. The fact is that there is not pitch darkness at all - on the contrary, many of the deep-sea inhabitants have developed the ability to bioluminescence. And therefore, any, even a faint reflection of someone else's light on the body of a fish can betray its location to predators.
And species such as the Pacific black dragon went even further - this underwater monster has a black body that absorbs light, transparent teeth and a bright bait on its antenna. When the skin of a predator absorbs 99.5% of the light, and there is pitch darkness around, the victim is basically unable to see that there is something near the bait. And the most interesting thing is that this effect is achieved simply by a high concentration of melanin pigment in the body of these fish.
There is so much melanin in their skin that its cells are piled on top of each other, the density of their location is prohibitive. Therefore, if some part of the photons is not absorbed by one cell, it is guaranteed to disappear into another. A similar principle, only using nanotubes, is applied in synthetic ultra-black materials. However, accelerating the production of melanin in living tissue is much easier and cheaper than working with nanomaterials. And scientists believe that this approach can easily be used as the basis for the creation of a new camouflage.