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Vision Res. 2007 May;47(10):1382-93. Epub 2007 Mar 8.

Form vision in the insect dorsal ocelli: an anatomical and optical analysis of the Locust Ocelli.

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Centre for Visual Sciences, Research School of Biological Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.


The dorsal ocelli are commonly considered to be incapable of form vision, primarily due to underfocused dioptrics. We investigate the extent to which this is true of the ocelli of the locust Locusta migratoria. Locust ocelli contain thick lenses with a pronounced concavity on the inner surface, and a deep clear zone separating retina and lens. In agreement with previous research, locust ocellar lenses were found to be decidedly underfocused with respect to the retina. Nevertheless, the image formed at the level of the retina contains substantial information that may be extractable by individual photoreceptors. Contrary to the classical view it is concluded that some capacity for resolution is present in the locust ocelli.

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