Dr. Tom Cronin Presents “Visual Ecology: The Unexpected Abilities of Animal Eyes” (3/9)

croninMonday, March 9, 2015, 4 p.m.: “Visual Ecology: The Unexpected Abilities of Animal Eyes,” a presentation by Dr. Tom Cronin in the Library Gallery

Humans are visual creatures. We’re also introspective and curious, a combination that makes us all by nature amateur visual ecologists (even if we don’t know it, or even what it means!) Since vision dominates how we experience our world, we naturally wonder how other animals see their own worlds. When a cat is entranced by images of fish on a television screen, does it see colors? Does it think they are real fish? What is it experiencing? When a wasp flies up and stares us in the face, just what is it seeing? These questions have probably been asked for as long as our species have been around.

Professor Cronin’s studies of vision have included animals ranging from the tiny plankton, through many marine creatures, to whooping cranes and even whales. In his talk, he will focus mainly on his favorite animals of all, the fearsome “mantis shrimps,” known for their abilities to break aquarium walls and impale human flesh. Their eyes are some of the strangest in nature, seeing things that humans can only duplicate with high-tech imagery.

• A reception, sponsored by the Libby Kuhn Endowment Fund, will follow the program.
• Co-Sponsored by the Friends of the Library & Gallery and the College of Natural and Mathematical Sciences

For more information on this event and other Friends of the Library & Gallery events, click here.