Folia Primatol (Basel). 1979;32(3):193-9

Visual capacities of the owl monkey (Aotus trivirgatus): temporal contrast sensitivity

Jacobs GH, Tootell RB, Blakeslee B.


Aotus monkeys were tested in a forced-choice discrimination task to determine their ability to discriminate sinusoidally flickering lights varying in temporal frequency and luminance contrast. Under conditions of moderate light adaptation this primate is maximally sensitive to lights flickering at 10 Hz while the highest frequency they can discriminate is about 42 Hz. At very low light levels (10(-5) ft L) maximum sensitivity is for 2.2--5 Hz flicker. The highest flicker rate that could be discriminated under these conditons was about 29 Hz. In comparison to humans tested in the same situation. Aotus monkeys show relatively lower sensitivity to temporal flicker under conditions of light adaptation but relatively higher sensitivity at very low light levels.

PMID: 120301