I Spy with My Lit­tle Eye


iD magazine - - Contents -

A fas­ci­nat­ing look at an­i­mal eyes

SPECIES: Euble­pharis mac­u­lar­ius

All it takes is a frac­tion of a sec­ond— a few mil­lime­ters, the mere twitch of a mus­cle— and the alarm starts to sound. The eyes of this crea­ture are equipped with highly sen­si­tive mo­tion sen­sors. Where we’d see only dry desert sand, the eyes of this noc­tur­nal hunter are able to per­ceive grains of sand be­ing slightly lifted by a beetle dig­ging un­der them. Ex­actly how they man­age to ac­com­plish this is a mys­tery. Re­searchers sus­pect a kind of oc­u­lar mu­ta­tion known as mar­ble eyes has pro­duced a vis­ual sys­tem in Euble­pharis mac­u­lar­ius that is markedly su­pe­rior to even the high-tech cam­eras of to­day.

An­i­mal eyes are among the great­est marvels in the nat­u­ral world. They can spot a mouse from over a mile away, de­ploy a built- in night- vi­sion cam­era, or pro­vide a 360- de­gree panoramic view. But which an­i­mal is as­so­ci­ated with which eye? id on the most fas­ci­nat­ing vis­ual ap­pa­ra­tuses on the planet.*

WHICH EYE BE­LONGS TO WHICH AN­I­MAL? On the fol­low­ing pages id presents an­i­mal eyes and their amaz­ing abil­i­ties with­out re­veal­ing the iden­tity of the an­i­mal other than its Latin name. Can you guess which crea­ture cor­re­sponds to which eye? The an­swers ap­pear

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