Quantitative comparison of the limits on visual spatial resolution set by the ganglion cell layer in twelve species of reef teleosts

Brain Behav Evol. 1989;34(3):184-92. doi: 10.1159/000116504.


A diverse range of retinal specializations are examined in twelve species of reef teleosts and estimates of the spatial resolution of neurons within the ganglion cell layer calculated using Matthiessen's ratio. Upper limits of between 4 and 27 cycles per degree were found to facilitate acute vision into frontal and eccentric space, utilizing temporal and nasal area centralis, respectively. Upper limits of between 3 and 20 cycles per degree were found in horizontal areas of acute vision across the retinal meridian. These areas are thought to be used for panoramic vision and may, in one species, indicate the relative importance of this region in comparison to the temporal area centralis. Comparisons are made between ganglion cell acuity and other morphological and behavioural acuities calculated in previous studies.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Count
  • Fishes / physiology*
  • Neurons / physiology
  • Retina / physiology*
  • Retinal Ganglion Cells / physiology*
  • Species Specificity*
  • Visual Acuity / physiology*
  • Visual Fields / physiology