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Vision Res. 1999 Mar;39(6):1071-8.

Optics of the developing fish eye: comparisons of Matthiessen's ratio and the focal length of the lens in the black bream Acanthopagrus butcheri (Sparidae, Teleostei).

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  • 1Department of Zoology, University of Western Australia, Nedlands, Australia. jshand@cyllene.uwa.edu.au


Matthiessen's ratio (distance from centre of lens to retina:lens radius) was measured in developing black bream, Acanthopagrus butcheri (Sparidae, Teleostei). The value decreased over the first 10 days post-hatch from 3.6 to 2.3 along the nasal and from four to 2.6 along temporal axis. Coincidentally, there was a decrease in the focal ratio of the lens (focal length:lens radius). Morphologically, the accommodatory retractor lentis muscle appeared to become functional between 10-12 days post-hatch. The results suggest that a higher focal ratio compensates for the relatively high Matthiessen's ratio brought about by constraints of small eye size during early development. Combined with differences in axial length, this provides a means for larval fish to focus images from different distances prior to the ability to accommodate.

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