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An Alternative Perspective

By Sara Richter

© Sara Richter

It is no surprise that horses perceive the world differently than humans do…Dr. Temple Grandin describes the vision of horses in her 1989 piece, Behavioral Principles of Livestock Handling: “The latest research on color vision in farm animals shows that they are dichromats with cones (color sensitive retina cells) most sensitive to yellowish-green (552-555 nm) and blue purple light (444-445 nm)2. Humans are trichromats and see the full color spectrum. Dichromatic vision may make the animal more sensitive to seeing sudden movement. It may explain why grazing animals such as cattle balk at drain gates, shadows, and anything that has high contrast of light and dark.” (Grandin, 1989). Read more.

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