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Spectral mechanisms of the compound eye in the firefly photinus pyralis coleoptera lampyridae


, : Spectral mechanisms of the compound eye in the firefly photinus pyralis coleoptera lampyridae. Journal of Comparative Physiology A Sensory Neural & Behavioral Physiology 35(1): 21-28

Electroretinograms (ERG) were recorded from dark- and chromatic-adapted compound eyes in the dusk-active firefly, P. pyralis .male., at different wavelengths ranging from 320-700 nm and over 4.5 log units change in stimulus intensity. ERG waveforms differed in the short (near-UV and violet) and long (yellow) wavelengths. Wave form differences were quantitated by analysis of rise and fall times as a function of the amplitude of the response. Rise times were relatively constant for all stimulus wavelengths. Variations in the fall times were detected and followed characteristically different functions for short and long wavelengths. No significant differences in the slopes of the V-logI curves at different stimulus wavelengths were observed. Spectral sensitivity curves obtained from the ventral sector in dark- and chromatic-adapted conditions revealed peaks in the short (.lambda.max 400 nm, .lambda.max 430 nm, and .lambda.max 380 nm) and long (.lambda.max 570 nm) wavelengths, suggesting the presence of 2 spectral mechanisms. The long wavelength (yellow) mechanism was in close tune with the species bioluminescence emission spectrum.

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