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Plumage Colours and the Eye of the Beholder: The Ecology of Colour and its Perception in Birds
Uppsala universitet, Teknisk-naturvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Teknisk-naturvetenskapliga fakulteten, Biologiska sektionen, Institutionen för evolutionsbiologi, Zooekologi.
2003 (Engelska)Doktorsavhandling, sammanläggning (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Abstract [en]

Virtually all diurnal birds have tetrachomatic vision based on four different colour receptors. As a result, birds are potentially able to perceive their environment in twice as many colours as humans and four times as many colours compared to most other mammals, which are dichromatic. In addition to the spectrum visible to humans, birds are able to detect ultraviolet (UV) light. Signals with a UV component have been shown to be important to birds both in foraging and colour signalling. Because of the superior colour discrimination of the avian eye, UV sensitivity, but especially owing to its tetrachromacy, we cannot know what birds look like to those that matter, i.e. other birds.

In my thesis I describe a new molecular method with which it is possible to identify the vision system of birds only using a small amount of DNA, without the need to keep or sacrifice the animal. It thereby facilitates large screenings, including rare and endangered species. The method has been used to increase the number of species with identified vision system type from 19 to 66. I show that raptors and songbirds have different vision systems, giving songbirds the possibility of a secret channel for colour signalling, and that male songbirds in coniferous forest take advantage of this to be significantly more cryptic to raptors than to females songbirds. I show that gulls have gained a vision system enabling them to detect the UV signals of fish when the fish swim close to the surface.

Even though we tend to be rather self-satisfied with the quality of our colour vision, we are colour-blind when compared to birds. My work shows that human colour vision is inadequate for judging animal coloration, and that there is much more going on in bird colour signalling than meets our eye.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 2003. , s. 34
Serie
Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1104-232X ; 915
Nyckelord [en]
Ecology, ultraviolet, colour vision, opsin
Nyckelord [sv]
Ekologi
Nationell ämneskategori
Ekologi
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-3864ISBN: 91-554-5824-6 (tryckt)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-3864DiVA, id: diva2:163795
Disputation
2003-12-19, Friessalen, EBC, Norbyvägen 14, Uppsala, 10:00
Opponent
Handledare
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27Bibliografiskt granskad
Delarbeten
1. Sexual selection, colour perception and coloured leg rings in grouse (Tetraonidae)
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>Sexual selection, colour perception and coloured leg rings in grouse (Tetraonidae)
Visa övriga...
2002 Ingår i: Avian Science, ISSN 1424-8743, Vol. 2, nr 3, s. 145–152-Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat) Published
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91158 (URN)
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27Bibliografiskt granskad
2. Complex Distribution of Avian Color Vision Systems Revealed by Sequencing the SWS1 Opsin from Total DNA
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>Complex Distribution of Avian Color Vision Systems Revealed by Sequencing the SWS1 Opsin from Total DNA
2003 Ingår i: Molecular Biology and Evolution, ISSN 0737-4038, Vol. 20, nr 6, s. 855–861-Artikel i tidskrift (Refereegranskat) Published
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91159 (URN)
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27Bibliografiskt granskad
3. Have colour vision and sexual signals co-evolved in birds?
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>Have colour vision and sexual signals co-evolved in birds?
Manuskript (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91160 (URN)
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27 Senast uppdaterad: 2010-01-13Bibliografiskt granskad
4. Crypsis is in the eye of the beholder: Differences in perception of songbird plumage colours between predator and prey
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>Crypsis is in the eye of the beholder: Differences in perception of songbird plumage colours between predator and prey
Manuskript (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91161 (URN)
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27 Senast uppdaterad: 2010-01-13Bibliografiskt granskad
5. UV biased colour vision in piscivorous dip and plunge diving birds
Öppna denna publikation i ny flik eller fönster >>UV biased colour vision in piscivorous dip and plunge diving birds
Manuskript (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Identifikatorer
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-91162 (URN)
Tillgänglig från: 2003-11-27 Skapad: 2003-11-27 Senast uppdaterad: 2010-01-13Bibliografiskt granskad

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