Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Color Vision

In reference to a species, the ability to discriminate between differences in colored stimuli or between colored and white stimuli; this discrimination must not be due to intensity (brightness) of the stimuli. To perceive color, two or more types of visual receptor, each of which is maximally sensitive to a different wavelength, are necessary. There are three types of primate cone that overlap one another, but are maximally sensitive at wavelengths of 440, 535, or 566nm, respectively.

See monochromatic vision, dichromatic vision, trichromatic vision.

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