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just wondering if there's any way chromatophores could function while suspended in fluid (maybe something similar to hemolymph?) I'm basing this off of mollusk chromatophores in particular, which as far as i'm aware, are multicellular units that are controlled by muscle. Would it be possible for one of these units to operate based on neurotransmitters or hormones, all while in a fluid? Or would an organelle that just spits out pigments be more realistic.

Sorry if this is scattered this is my first time posting a question >~<

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Not really

They'd have to be single cell organisms (or really small multicellular) but then they wouldn't be in a matrix so couldn't make patterns.

What you'd end up with a liquid that could make solid colours at best. You could have three different cells suspended in a liquid and hormones could trigger a colour in a RBG style.

Really doesn't use chromatophores to their best advantage.

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  • $\begingroup$ any tips on how to make a biologically feasible color changing fluid then??? i can't think of any alternatives really :( even though it really isnt utilizing chromatophores too well $\endgroup$
    – fyshsticks
    Commented May 24 at 3:25
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    $\begingroup$ What about tiny fish swimming in a school? $\endgroup$
    – Thorne
    Commented May 24 at 5:10
  • $\begingroup$ unsure if that would work,,, my plan was for a complex multicellular animal with color changing chromatophores suspended in their open circulatory system, a thin membrane would function for cutaneous respiration and so the color changing blood would be visible, and, eventually once the species evolves the color changing becomes a social indicator like facial expressions. though, i suppose if i really wanted to dive deep i could have some sort of symbiotic organism swimming around in there thats responsible for the color change.... thanks so much for your input :) $\endgroup$
    – fyshsticks
    Commented May 28 at 16:54
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    $\begingroup$ @fyshsticks Just imagine trying to make a picture on a fast flowing river by dropping ink drops. Everything you do is swept away in seconds. Best you can do is solid colours. $\endgroup$
    – Thorne
    Commented May 30 at 0:21

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