Blue in nature
One of the reasons why we’re so in love with the color blue, and this fact is supported by research, is that we tend to see the color everywhere. Things that are blue are abundantly perceived in our daily lives. How and why, you may ask. Well, there is so much in the natural world that is blue, if you think about it. The sky is blue, many flowers are blue, the water is blue and so are some animals. Though some of these may be rare, they are present in our world and are an important part of our ecosystem. The following is a list of things that are blue in the natural world.
Our own planet Earth is called the “Blue Planet” for a reason. It is filled with an abundant amount of water. When you see the planet from space, as astronaut Yuri Gagarin did, it will look mostly blue. Significantly, most of the human body is made up of water too. Liquid water covers most of the Earth’s surface and seems very blue. The shade blue comes from the way that oceans and seas are colored. The deeper shades of blue come from the fact that the dark deep depths of ocean water look sharper. You will see lighter shades of blue because the depths of some water bodies are shallower than others. Deeper water has a rich, almost navy-blue hue, whereas the shallower parts look a lot like cyan blue.
In the Earth’s own solar system, the planets Neptune and Uranus are blue. The top portions of the atmospheres of both these planets contain a gas called methane. Methane reflects blue wavelengths of the sun’s light back into space to give us the perception of blue. Astronomers also discovered another true-blue planet, an exoplanet orbiting a star sixty-three lightyears away. This was discovered in 2013 through NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope.
Perhaps the loveliest things that are blue cannot be seen with the naked eye, but they do exist. Some stars are the most delightful shades of blue. They are intensely hot and blindingly bright. Their surface temperatures range anywhere from 20,000 to 50,000 degrees Celsius. The most known example of such a star is called Rigel. It is the brightest star contained in the constellation of Orion.
The sky appears blue during the daytime due to a phenomenon called “scattering of light”. Short wavelength light hits the atmosphere and this is scattered in every direction. Our eyes perceive more of the blue from the spectrum of light, and so we see this more than we see any other wavelength.
When we see the oceans and seas, we see vast expanses of blue. The water appears blue because water absorbs colors in the red part of the spectrum of light. As a filter works, this leaves blue parts of the light spectrum out and that is what we see. The ocean may also turn green, red or other colors, depending on how light leaves particles and sediments floating in the water itself.
No one can deny the beauty of a precious gemstone. This is very true of the blue precious gemstone called sapphire. Sapphires appear in rock formations, and they aren’t impressive at first. Though they appear a dull blueish gray (Brazilian sapphires), on polishing, they retain a rich deep blue color. This color is unmatched by any other things that are blue. The royal blue color comes from the color of some sapphires. Some rough sapphires, like African ones, have a deep midnight blue hue and appear shiny and crystalline.
Blue and blue-green algae are organisms that naturally survive in rivers and lakes. Algae are also found in waterways. They are a bacterium called Cyanobacteria. They use light to photosynthesize.
You may think that people with blue eyes are born lucky. Certainly, this is an enviable eye color to possess. Nonetheless, blue-eyed folks don’t actually have any blue pigment in their eyes. What makes eyes blue is a lack of melanin. This causes the scattering of light in the eyes. As a result, an illusion of blue eyes is created. Such an effect is known as Tyndallization.
An Aurora, commonly referred to as northern lights, or southern lights, is a naturally occurring display of light in the sky. It appears as if the whole sky has turned blue, with hints of pink and green. This effect is most notably seen in high-latitude regions of the Earth. They happen when there are disturbances in the atmosphere. Disturbances are typically caused by wind.
By their very name, these are delightfully tasty things that are blue, and you can grow them in your backyard. These are tiny, dark bluish to purple berries. They are garnishes for desserts and are anti-oxidants. Nightshade berries are almost identical in appearance to blueberries. These are very poisonous and you must be careful not to mistake them for the commonly edible ones!
Extremely hot fire
The image that fire creates in our minds is one of bright orange flames. Nonetheless, fire can be blue when it reaches certain very hot temperatures. For instance, when lightning strikes an object and causes a fire, that fire creates blue flames. This is because our atmosphere is made up of nitrogen and oxygen. This blend of gases produces a blue color when it is exposed to high voltages as that caused by lightning.
Have you seen the animated classic, Finding Nemo? The fish on whom the character of Dory is based is called the Blue Tang. It is a bright blue fish with black and yellow fins, and a head that is entirely black. It is one of the breeds of surgeonfish.
Certain breeds of shellfish are among things that are blue. Two such crustaceans are the blue crab and the blue lobster. Blue crabs have dark blue to brown mottled colored bodies with blue claws. When the crab is cooked, due to the breaking down of pigment, the color turns bright orange.
The blue lobster is very rare but is known to exist. The blue coloration is due to a genetic defect caused by the excessive production of a protein. This blue color is one of the most intense blues found in nature, a bright royal blue. Certain breeds of crayfish are also light blue colored.
Blue bugs and butterflies
The blue shield bug is a species of bugs found in North America and Eurasia. It lives in moors, edges of forests, marshes and damp areas. These bugs are a bright cerulean blue. Butterflies have pure blue pigmentation. The blue morpho butterfly is the most compelling of all blue butterflies. It is native to South and Central America. It is one of the largest butterflies in the world, and has iridescent strikingly blue wings with dark brown borders.
This unique creature of the water has a body of the brightest blue and a contrasting yellow face. It is also called the bernis eel. It resembles a Chinese mythical dragon, with its long, narrow body and dorsal fins at a height. The ribbon eel lives in lagoons and reefs in the Indo-Pacific Ocean, around East Africa, and extending to southern Japan, French Polynesia, and Australia.
The name of this sea slug sounds scary, but the blue dragon is actually very beautiful to look at. It is a small creature, with symmetrical bright blue patterns on its body. Blue dragons use the surface tension in the seawater and float upside down. They don’t actually swim. Rather, they are whisked along the sea by currents and winds.
To a lot of people, the most breathtaking things that are blue in nature are flowers. The most common blue flower is the cornflower with a color named after it, cornflower blue. This is a bright blue flower that attracts bees and butterflies alike. Iris is another flower that has an exotic shape and comes in a shaded blueish purple hue. It is a hardy flower to have in your garden. Hydrangea is a popular blue flower that grows in clusters and can form a border for any garden. Blooms are a lighter blue shade than most other blue flowers.
Bluebells are flowers and the classic blooms that appear in stories and fairy tales. They are a brilliant blue color and grow in a row with petals hanging downwards. They look like bells, so the name. Another hardy perennial flower and a garden classic is the blue delphinium. These look great in a vase too. If you ever see a forget-me-not, you will never forget it! It is the most glorious shade of turquoise with a bright yellow center. Blue in a flower symbolizes peace and calm. There are many blue flowers to love, and you will be hard-pressed when you see them all!
Birds of blue
Birds that are blue are some of the most enchanting things that are blue in the natural world. The enigmatic peacock stands out as the king of birds, but it cannot fly. It has a marvelous array of feathers that fan out behind it. It is famous for its jeweled blue body. The macaw is another impressive bird, with blue wings and a yellow tummy. It is a parrot. The fairy wren is a small bird with blue feathers all over. Another small, but enigmatic bird that is blue is the kingfisher. It boasts bright blue feathers and a yellow belly. It has a characteristic long beak. Bluebirds and blue jays are both small birds of blue, but they make a big statement because of their brilliant blue colors.
Blue in nature
Out of all the colors in the spectrum, blue in nature is the most wonderful to behold. There is so much more that is blue in our natural world, but all the things that are blue cannot possibly be listed. Suffice it to say that if we do ever get a chance to experience the color blue in nature, we will be all the richer for it.