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Proceedings Paper

Ultraviolet-polarization vision: its role in salmon navigation
Author(s): Craig W. Hawryshyn
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Paper Abstract

Recent findings in a number of laboratories suggest that there are two classes of polarization sensitivity (PS) in fish, and perhaps in other vertebrates as well. One class shows orthogonal PS only in the UV spectrum (salmonids) while the other shows PS in the long-wavelength spectrum (sunfishes). Presumably, this diversity in PS systems implicates a more variable function of PS; such as contrast enhancement and spatial orientation. The work in my laboratory centers on the role of UV cones in PS and orientation behavior. Some salient findings include: (1) salmonids have four cone pigments which overlap in the UV spectrum, (2) electrophysiological measurements of PS indicate the presence of orthogonal PS in the UV spectrum, and (3) spatial orientation behavior of salmonids requires UV light. Single-unit recording in the CNS reveals that polarization, sensitive ganglion cells project to the torus semicicularis not the optic tectum as indicated in the previous studies. I will present evidence that single neurons in the torus are capable of coding the e-vector of incident plane polarized light. Presumably, these neurons play a role in mediating polarized light guided behavior in fish, like object detection/recognition and spatial orientation in the aquatic environment.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 December 1997
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 3120, Wideband Interferometric Sensing and Imaging Polarimetry, (23 December 1997); doi: 10.1117/12.283850
Show Author Affiliations
Craig W. Hawryshyn, Univ. of Victoria (Canada)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3120:
Wideband Interferometric Sensing and Imaging Polarimetry
Harold Mott; Wolfgang-Martin Boerner, Editor(s)

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