Fascinating World

A small attempt to gather unusual and amazing facts about elements of Nature.

Cat’s Eyes

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We all admire the bright, colourful and shining eyes of a cat. But apart from the colourful prettiness, it also has some unique features.

Fellow blogger (Mr. Amit Misra, pradyot.net)  gave a constructive suggestion that instead of always writing about amazing creatures, sometimes strange facts about our everyday creatures also could be written. In addition, today is 181st birthday of French ophthalmologist Ferdinand Monoyer (who  invented the eye testing visual acuity chart). So this post is about the special characteristics of the eyes of our domestic cat.

Image result for eyes of cat

Source: Here

It is assumed that cats can see in total darkness, but this is not true. However, cats can see clearly in only one sixth amount of light that we humans require to see.                          All eyes have a lens through which the light passes and the amount of the light passing through the lens is controlled by an aperture or pupil. This light then falls on the retina to form an image. The retina is rich with receptor cells — rods and cones. The rods detect light and the cones detect colour.

In the cats, this rods to cone ratio is higher than that in the humans. So, they can detect much more light and have a better vision in dim light. Higher count of rod cells also allows the cats to detect even slightest movement.

The shape of the cat’s pupil is like a slit or elliptical shaped. The opening and closing movements of such pupil are faster than the round pupil of human eye. This helps the cat to quickly adjust to the changes in the surrounding light. (Therefore the cats do not get blinded by sudden brightness like we do).

Image result for eyes of cat

Source: Here 

When the light is in abundance, the slit-like pupil closes to reduce the amount of light entering the eye and thus protects the sensitive retina.

The cats are considered as colourblind; however, they do see the colours but in much less intense hues. The receptors cone cells which are responsible for colour detection are  less in number and these cells are not concentrated. So, for the cats some colours are muted than they are to us. They can differentiate blue-violets better than the red side of the colour spectrum.

The cats have a layer of reflective mirror-like cells at the back of the retina. These cells are called as Tapetum lucidum. These cells collect and reflect all the available light within the eyes and so the cats are able to see even when there is hardly any light. These same reflective cells give a jewel like shine to the cat’s eyes in the darkness of the night.

Image result for tapetum lucidum

Source: Here

Most nocturnal carnivores and deep sea animals have this layer of cells. It improves the ability to see in the dark but reduces visual acuity.

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18 thoughts on “Cat’s Eyes

  1. Interesting🙂 The first pic is so lovely

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am glad that you liked it, thank you so much:)

    Like

  3. Beautiful article about cat’s eyes Savita, I love it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Very interesting post with amazing facts .

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I learned a lot that I did not previously know from your post. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Interesting facts, we all see those eyes often but hardly know about their characteristics 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Greetings fellow cat lover! Thanks for sharing this. I am a cat lover and we have just rescued three little cuties, Nera, Ebony and Ziggy. I have a poetry blog here on WordPress and today’s poem is about a cat I saw on holiday in case you have time to look? Have a good weekend, Sam 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • So happy to have come across another cat lover and it is great to hear that you rescued Nera, Ebony and Ziggy. Welcome to this space and thank you so much for sharing your thoughts here. Wish you a nice weekend 🙂

      Like

  8. Beautifully captured pictures, loved reading this post. 👍 interesting facts.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Love that cute kitten! Thanks for sharing interesting facts about cats’ eyes, that are never heard of!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. great post and the first pic so cute…

    Liked by 1 person

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