As introduced in last week’s Countdown, here is your almost surely unknown fact of the day.
When a pistol shrimp senses prey is nearby, it will open the top part of its big claw, allowing some water to enter a small chamber in the crook of the claw. Then, when it clamps down, the pressure from a small plunger on the top claw forces the water out of the chamber. This happens so fast that it creates bubbles. And not just any bubbles: these bubbles can speed out at 60 miles per hour, fast enough to stun or kill the prey! When the bubbles pop, it makes a “snap” sound that gives these shrimp their name.
The bubbles are loud. Like, really loud. The snap of one recently-discovered species of pistol shrimp called Synalpheus pinkfloydi (named after something else that is also loud and very cool: Pink Floyd) can reach 210 decibels. That is louder than an actual gunshot, which is around 140 – 175 decibels.
The game thread for the unprepossessing pillow fight between your 2-11 Houston Texans and the 2-11 Jacksonville Jaguars will post at 11:45 a.m. CST. Should you wish to chat about what you’re about to endure before it begins, please do it in the Comments below.