Glow Detritis

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Glow Detritis are various detritis most commonly found in the deep sea which have reduced some of their natural color and developed bioluminescence. They have developed a life cycle which revolves around being distributed by scavengers. They glow brightly as they feed on dead organisms, attracting scavengers to the unusual sight. The scavengers feed from the carcass, and the Glow Detritis survive the trip through their gut with a thickened cell wall and their ability to use nitrate in place of oxygen. Upon exiting in feces, they wriggle free, sometimes with assistance from scavengers or coprophages which have learned that glowing means food, and locate more dead things to consume. They are eventually consumed by scavengers once again, continuing the cycle. This allows them to be distributed much farther in waters where food is infrequent.

Like many Terran microbes, there are many species of Glow Detriti and they are difficult to distinguish. The exact color of the bioluminescence can vary from purple to blue to green, but there is otherwise very little obvious visual distinction between species. While consuming dead organisms, they also participate in the ammonification stage of the nitrogen cycle, much like their ancestor.