Letter | Published:

Phototaxis and Green Rods in Urodeles

Naturevolume 199page620 (1963) | Download Citation



MANY Amphibia are strongly phototactic, and it is generally found that this behaviour is more readily released by blue light than by light of any other colour1. It is reasonable to suppose that the green rod underlies such phototaxis, since this receptor has been shown to be strongly sensitive to blue light2. Although all anurans are said to have green rods, not all urodeles possess them, so that if this hypothesis is correct we should expect those urodeles which lack green rods also to fail to show any marked sensitivity to blue light when their phototactic behaviour is tested. In experiments recorded here two urodeles were tested, one of which has green rods (Triturus cristatus), and one of which lacks them (Salamandra salamandra)3.

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    Pearse, A. S., Proc. Amer. Acad. Arts and Sci., 45, 159 (1910).

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    Walls, G. L., The Vertebrate Eye (Michigan, 1942).

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    Muntz, W. R. A., J. Exp. Biol., 40, 371 (1963).

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    Kendall, M. G., Rank Correlation Methods (London, 1948).

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  1. Institute of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford

    • W. R. A. MUNTZ


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