Humans are interesting creatures. We look at the world with some of the most advanced eyes and minds, but often fail to realize that others see the world differently than we do. While this idea is often put forward when talking about the way other people experience the world, in this case I’m literally talking about vision, and insects in particular.
In the vast electromagnetic spectrum of wavelengths (extending from below the long wavelengths used for radio, to the short wavelengths of gamma radiation) we humans see only a miniscule fraction that we call visible light. This small sliver, spanning the distance between violet and red is the way we perceive the world around us with our eyes. However bees and other insects have a different view of the world. Their whole range of light is shifted further towards the violet end of the spectrum and further from the red. This means that, while they can’t perceive red, they see colors we simply cannot see – what we call ultra-violet. This also means is that bees see a world literally hidden before our eyes. [Read more...]