Spontaneous saccades under different visual conditions in the pigeon

Neuroreport. 1992 Jan;3(1):17-20. doi: 10.1097/00001756-199201000-00004.


Spontaneous saccades of both eyes were recorded in head-restrained pigeons placed in 6 different visual conditions (darkness and biocular, uniocular, frontal or lateral viewing). Most saccades (95%) were biocular and directed forward (around the beak axis) and backward (around the horizontal line). In the dark, the proportions of forward and backward saccades were different, they became symmetrical when the visual input involved either the left eye, the lateral fields or both eyes. This spatial reorganization could be mediated by one 'dominant' eye through the lateral and foveal vision. Although some biocular saccades were strictly convergent, divergent or conjugate, most of them showed a higher independence since they had different directions and amplitudes for each eye.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Columbidae
  • Darkness
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Restraint, Physical
  • Saccades / physiology*
  • Vision, Binocular / physiology
  • Vision, Monocular / physiology