Null point of discrimination in crustacean polarisation vision

How, Martin J., Christy, John, Roberts, Nicholas W. and Marshall, N. Justin (2014) Null point of discrimination in crustacean polarisation vision. Journal of Experimental Biology, 217 14: 2462-2467. doi:10.1242/jeb.103457

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Author How, Martin J.
Christy, John
Roberts, Nicholas W.
Marshall, N. Justin
Title Null point of discrimination in crustacean polarisation vision
Journal name Journal of Experimental Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0022-0949
Publication date 2014-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1242/jeb.103457
Open Access Status File (Publisher version)
Volume 217
Issue 14
Start page 2462
End page 2467
Total pages 6
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher The Company of Biologists
Collection year 2015
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The polarisation of light is used by many species of cephalopods and crustaceans to discriminate objects or to communicate. Most visual systems with this ability, such as that of the fiddler crab, include receptors with photopigments that are oriented horizontally and vertically relative to the outside world. Photoreceptors in such an orthogonal array are maximally sensitive to polarised light with the same fixed e-vector orientation. Using opponent neural connections, this two-channel system may produce a single value of polarisation contrast and, consequently, it may suffer from null points of discrimination. Stomatopod crustaceans use a different system for polarisation vision, comprising at least four types of polarisation-sensitive photoreceptor arranged at 0, 45, 90 and 135 deg relative to each other, in conjunction with extensive rotational eye movements. This anatomical arrangement should not suffer from equivalent null points of discrimination. To test whether these two systems were vulnerable to null points, we presented the fiddler crab Uca heteropleura and the stomatopod Haptosquilla trispinosa with polarised looming stimuli on a modified LCD monitor. The fiddler crab was less sensitive to differences in the degree of polarised light when the e-vector was at −45 deg than when the e-vector was horizontal. In comparison, stomatopods showed no difference in sensitivity between the two stimulus types. The results suggest that fiddler crabs suffer from a null point of sensitivity, while stomatopods do not.
Keyword Polarisation distance
Fiddler crab
Mantis shrimp
Discrimination threshold
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Queensland Brain Institute Publications
Official 2015 Collection
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 4 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 4 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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