3D glasses to cuttlefish

Like humans, cuttlefish would respond as if they encountered an actual thing in front of them,  they have the capability to watch 3d movies. They are amazingly skilled when it comes to understanding of distance downwards. The team super glued Velcro to the skin of the cuttlefish, an assistant professor of ecology, evolution and behavior at the University of Minnesota and lead author of the paper, Trevor Wardill told us. Then they fixed the 3D glasses, to the Velcro on the skin.

The experimenters showed a video of shrimp, one of the favorite tasty snacks of the cuttlefish on a screen at the front of the cuttlefish tank. Wardill told us that it took a lot of persuading of the cuttlefish to make them put on the glasses, as they want to play with the glasses. However, when they did allow them to put on the glasses, something which is fascinating has been observed. In the same manner, they would react if they saw their prey in front of them, the cuttlefish enlarged their tentacles and charged the shrimp which is on-screen.

To perform the research, Wardill’s team from the University of Minnesota went over to the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts in the summer. There they have investigated while being in the tank how the eleven various European cuttlefish reacted to the films shown.

The eyes of the cuttlefish are identical to that of a camera like a cornea, lens, iris and retina. They can make out the ranges and  because they have the ability to translate the variations between the signals coming from both eyes with the help of their brains, in short, they have the capability to use stereopsis.

When the experimenters conducted the study with cuttlefish with the glasses, they have observed that the fish can alter their position with respect to the monitor in front of them. It was observed, cuttlefish perform  the depth imaging better than humans. Similar to humans, the brains of the cuttlefish can calculate distances utilizing incoming data with the help of both their eyes at the same time, as illustrated by the experimenters. Whereas, they hold the view that not just a distinct application, but cuttlefish stereopsis is probably managed by a different algorithm when compared with humans. The neural foundation of the cuttlefish is still unknown and it is not a simple job to perform.

How did these researchers get an idea to make the mollusks wear 3D glasses?

For fifteen years, Wardill has been researching the visions of the insects. And since 2012, he has been studying the vision of the cephalopods, the category of mollusks of which the cuttlefish belong. His laboratory work has found the connections between different body operations and the brains of the cephalopod. For example, the lump on the skin known as papillae, which are utilized for sensory recognition.

A June 2019 research focusing on the eyes of the praying mantises in an identical way published by the scientists at the Newcastle University inspired Wardill’s team. That research was the first time scientists have discovered neurons in an invertebrate that assisted the stereoscopic vision. Wardill told that different brains calculate stereo vision in different manners. They thought that there was something distinctive about the praying mantis. However, the cuttlefish can do it too, which means that the ability is probably developed in various distinct manners in biological history, relying on the epoch and the animal.

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