This single-celled organism can point its eye in different directions and it may use it to hunt prey. It also has a unique piston mechanism, but its use is still unclear.
Michael Le Page via New Scientist:
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It is perhaps the most extraordinary eye in the living world – so extraordinary that no one believed the biologist who first described it more than a century ago.
Now it appears that the tiny owner of this eye uses it to catch invisible prey by detecting polarised light. This suggestion is also likely to be greeted with disbelief, for the eye belongs to a single-celled organism called Erythropsidinium. It has no nerves, let alone a brain. So how could it “see” its prey?
Fernando Gómez of the University of São Paulo, Brazil, thinks it can. “Erythropsidinium is a sniper,” he told New Scientist. “It is waiting to see the prey, and it shoots in that direction.”
Erythropsidinium belongs to a group of single-celled planktonic organisms known as dinoflagellates.