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Cambrian crustacean’s unusual vision system described

There’s an article in Nature (479, 270 (17 November 2011) on that Cambrian crustacean with the rather unusual eyes: “Ancient creature’s surprising sight”:

The fossilized compound eyes of a crustacean that lived around half a billion years ago reveal a surprisingly sophisticated visual system that was probably able to detect motion and gauge distance in many directions.

Resembling a tiny mace, the eye consists of four distinct areas atop a stalk measuring at most 0.5 millimetres in length. The four overlapping zones scanned mainly forwards, backwards, to the outer sides and inner sides, respectively.

Probably served the same purpose as movable scanning lights.

See also: Cambrian explosion: See Darwinist. See hat. See Darwinist wave hands. See rabbit

Multi-stage life cycles date back to the Cambrian?

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One Response to Cambrian crustacean’s unusual vision system described

  1. Of related note:

    Complex Arthropod Eyes Found in Early Cambrian – June 2011
    Excerpt: Complex eyes with modern optics from an unknown arthropod, more complex than trilobite eyes, have been discovered in early Cambrian strata from southern Australia.,,, Here we report exceptionally preserved fossil eyes from the Early Cambrian (~515 million years ago) Emu Bay Shale of South Australia, revealing that some of the earliest arthropods possessed highly advanced compound eyes, each with over 3,000 large ommatidial lenses and a specialized ‘bright zone’. These are the oldest non-biomineralized eyes known in such detail, with preservation quality exceeding that found in the Burgess Shale and Chengjiang deposits. Non-biomineralized eyes of similar complexity are otherwise unknown until about 85 million years later. The arrangement and size of the lenses indicate that these eyes belonged to an active predator that was capable of seeing in low light. The eyes are more complex than those known from contemporaneous trilobites and are as advanced as those of many living forms. They provide further evidence that the Cambrian explosion involved rapid innovation in fine-scale anatomy as well as gross morphology,
    http://crev.info/content/11062.....y_cambrian

    Modern optics in the eyes of an Early Cambrian arthropod – June 2011
    Excerpt: ‘the Emu Bay Shale, which provides exquisite preservation of Early Cambrian animals, has now supplied us with the earliest example of an non-trilobite arthropod eye. Of the seven specimens recovered to date, three are spectacular for the detail revealed and stunning because they document eyes that “are as advanced as those of many living forms”
    http://www.arn.org/blogs/index.....n_early_ca

    Evolution vs. The Trilobite Eye – Prof. Andy McIntosh – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4032589

    Physicist Riccardo Levi-Setti observes:

    “In fact, this doublet is a device so typically associated with human invention that its discovery comes as something of a shock. The realization that trilobites developed and used such devices half a billion years ago makes the shock even greater. And a final discovery – that the refracting interface between the two elements in a trilobite’s eyes was designed in accordance with optical constructions worked out by Descartes and Huygens in the mid-seventeenth century – borders on sheer science fiction” [Lev93p57].

    Thinnest ever camera sees like a trilobite – December 2010
    Excerpt: An unusual arthropod eye design that maximizes image resolution has inspired the design of the thinnest stills and video camera yet made.
    http://www.newscientist.com/ar.....nline-news

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