We investigated whether young infants orient reliably towards more salient vs. less salient objects in a visual scene. Subjects were tested with stimuli presented on textured fields, one side showing a target stimulus (a 'more salient' or 'less salient' texture patch) and the other a background stimulus. Infants typically preferred the more salient, but not the less salient target. Their behaviour depended on the configuration of the background stimulus. In contrast, 3-4 year-old children always showed a preference for the target stimulus, regardless of the configuration of the background. We conclude that both saliency of a target stimulus and its context play a role in early texture segmentation.