The hatchet fish, a great marvel of Creation, lives at depths of around 1,000 m (3,280 ft). Its large eyes, which face upwards, enable it to see in the dark and hunt their prey, which passes overhead. However, these creatures also have to be invisible to threats that might arise from above. Their superior bodily structure, which is flat and silver colored, protects them from this danger by allowing them to camouflage themselves easily in the dark.
But how are they protected against potential threats coming from below, for those fish living at even greater depths are, by means of their own large eyes, just as predatory. This problem is solved by a superb method of deception, through special cells located in its stomach: photophores. These extraordinary cells, which produce a biological light by combining two chemical substances to initiate the necessary reaction, imitate the changing color of the light filtering down from above and emit light of exactly the same color. As a result, predators below cannot see the hatchet fish’s shadow as it passes over them.
You may never have heard of this fish or what it looks like or how it lives. So how does knowledge of its magnificent features benefit you? Had Allah so willed, He could have created this fish without all of its attributes or willed to not create any of the countless attributes necessary for its survival.
The details that His creatures display for human beings may transform them from discontented and restless individuals chasing after worldly interests into happy and contented people with faith and hope in the Hereafter. It is enough to see His blessings in everything and to consider His absolute existence for this to happen. Every beauty and detail belong to Allah, Who constantly bestows them upon us:
And in your Creation and all the creatures He has spread about, there are Signs for people with certainty. (Surat al-Jathiyyah, 4)