Professor Lund University, Dan-Eric Nilsson and his former student, and now Ph.D. Cynthia Tedor, have developed an optical system that replicates the features of bird's vision. In particular, it adds the ability to see the picture in ultraviolet light in addition to the visible spectrum. And it opens the ability to navigate that a person is difficult to imagine.
The university's research group Lund Vision Group has designed a multi-spectral camera with a set of optical filters. Their number and combinations can vary, and the filters themselves mimic the perception of light fluxes by various types of photoreceptors in the retina of living beings. In birds, for example, there are four species of them, and with the help of such a camera, scientists were able to look at the world with a “bird's eye”.
It turned out that the ability to see objects in the ultraviolet significantly increases the contrast of the image. For example, the foliage of trees from a solid green wall turns into an alternation of light and dark spots that correspond to the illuminated side of the leaves and the one in the shade. And instead of a certain solid mass, as people see it, birds perceive the crowns of trees as a maze with clearly marked three-dimensional obstacles, which makes it easier to maneuver between them.
What he saw did not become a discovery, but made him think that the ability to see nature in different ways drastically changes the perception of the world. People and birds seem to live in different realities, and where we see an obstacle or the danger of falling from a height, the birds feel saving space for flight and the ability to escape from land-based predators.