Fishes hunt their prey with their eyes rather than tracking their smells; and as a result Our Lord created these living beings’ eyes in the most splendid and multi-functional way for their needs. As a matter of fact, some fishes are able to see not only what is deep down in the water, but also what is above the water. Some have very superior color visions and others have the ultimate resolution of sight. The reason of these splendid features in the fish eyes is that they have a more different eye structure than that of land animals.
The eye is one of the organs that have drawn the evolutionists into a dead end since Darwin admitted that the thought of the eye made him cold all over. (From a letter to his friend Asa Gray – on April the 3rd, 1860) The reason why the evolutionists flew away from it is better understood once the structure and the function of the eye are examined.
The eye has a very complex structure consisted of many different organelles and sections. It has amazingly comprehensive functions. These comprehensive functions are formed by a harmonious cooperation of different organelles and sections making the eye. Besides, the eyes are created with the most suitable features for each species in accordance to their needs. Our Lord Who created the universe reveals that He is the One Who created the eye, in one verse of the Quran:
Say: ‘Who provides for you out of heaven and earth? Who controls hearing and sight? Who brings forth the living from the dead and the dead from the living? Who directs the whole affair?’ They will say, ‘Allah.’ Say, ‘So will you not have fear?’ (Surah Yunus, 31)
In this article, we will refer to the fishes and amphibians (animals capable of both living in water and on land such as frogs, toads and salamanders) and to the superiority of their sights.
The General Features of Fish Eyes
Fish eyes see the world behind a transparent curtain. This curtain is a reminiscent of the goggles used by divers.
The field of vision under water is limited and unnecessary after 30 meters of depth. As the fishes need to see the objects close to them, their eyes are created according to this need. Their spherical and hard structures are adjusted to see the objects that are closer. Once the fish wants to see a distant point, the whole lens system is pulled backwards via a special muscle mechanism. (This feature is one of the conveniences provided by the spherical structure)
The other reason for the spherical structure is the refraction of light in water. As the eye is filled with a fluid that has almost the same density with water an image outside does not refract while being reflected on the eyeball. And consequently, the image outside the eye lens is focused exactly on the retina and the fish becomes able to see clearly underwater, unlike man.
Yet, after 15 meters of depth, water functions as an optical filter that does not allow the infrared and ultraviolet lights; thus fishes do not need a very advance color vision. This is because their world is almost consisted of a mere blue, close to a green.
Fishes are more sensitive to soft lights than animals on land as they have more cells sensitive to soft light in their retinas. And this allows them to use the light in water at the most highest amount.
Now, let’s exploresome fish eyes possessing these superior features.
Sharks look for food everywhere from the shallow waters to the deep oceans and therefore their eyes are created in the most suitable way for the changes in water pressures. As a result of this wonderful feature of Creation, the inner eye and retina balances the pressure difference applied on the outer surface of the eye and prevents the eye from being harmed by any pressure. The eyes of this living being are created to be able to see even in dim light. Thanks to this feature, the eye perceives the objects in low resolution better than man does and thus gains a sharp vision.
Different species of sharks have different eye types of their own. For instance, hammerhead shark has its eyes on the lobes bestriding its head. This feature of creation increases the three dimensional visual quality of the animal and enables it to measure the distance between better while swimming fast towards its prey.
Almighty Allah created the eyes of scald fish in the most suitable form for its body type, as a sign of His Supreme Intelligence. This fish living in the depth of the sea has a flat body type enabling him to protect himself by hiding under the sand. As a result of this body type and protection technique, its eyes are on the same side of its body. Thanks to this feature of its eyes, it can still see its enemies while lying in the sand. It is for sure that this feature scald fish has is one of the manifestations of the Eternal Compassion of Almighty Allah.
Four Eyed Fish
The eye structure of four eyed fishes is unique. The feature making these beings’ eyes unique is that they have two eye lenses on both eyes and thus they are able to focus on different objects under and above water, simultaneously.
This is the reason why the fish is named as “the four eyed fish”. In these eyes, each eye lens has the ability of looking at a different direction. Its eye is big and a reminiscent of that of frog’s; and while half of its eye ball is looking above the water, the other half is able to see under water. It is a great miracle that brain combines different images taken from the same eye and simultaneously interprets these images, and then presents the collected information to the living being. As their eye structure enables them to see what is above the water, it becomes them difficult to be hunted by the fisherman.
Many amphibians such as frogs and salamanders perceive objects in colors. Almighty Allah created them with at least four types of photo receptors possessing different chemical compounds. Besides, that amphibians are able to see 360 degrees around their bodies provides them a superior quality. Our Lord reveals that He created living beings in many different forms, in one verse of the Quran:
“And Allah has created every animal from water: of them there are some that creep on their bellies; some that walk on two legs; and some that walk on four. Allah creates what He wills for verily Allah has power over all things.” (Surah An-Nur, 45)
Almighty Allah created a very special iris structure in the frog eyes, enabling light control. Frogs have very different forms of irises such as in the shape of heart, pear, round or oval. That frogs have different iris structures in their eyes is a sign of Our Lord’s beautiful name Al-Musawwir (The One Who Shapes). Thanks to these original iris structures, frogs are able to focus on objects close and distant.
During the researches, a very interesting characteristic of frog eyes was discovered. The retina cells on frog eyes send more signals to the brain when small, dark and moving object passes by. In other words, their eyes are particularly created to perceive flies. Besides, their eye sockets allow them to move their eyes into several directions and thus they can easily see their prey or predators. Their splendid eye structures are imitated by the plane engineers and are modeled to design surveillance equipment in motion, for military aircraft.
Salamanders have very big eyes in comparison to their bodies. Their eyes are as colorful as their bodies and thus enable them to be protected. Salamanders can perceive the images in three dimensions, they measure the distance by comparing two different images reflecting on the retinas of their right and left eyes. By doing so, they detect the exact location of their prey and catch it in a sudden move by their tongues.
Pinhole eyes are seen in some marine creatures such as Nautilus and Planarianda. This is an eye type that does not require lenses. The light is not focused by a lens as it does in the camera eye. The pinhole box cameras in 1930s and 40s are an example for this optical structure. This camera works without a lens and uses the natural optical light scaltering varying from image to image.
Living beings having this type of eye uses changeable eye pupils to adjust to the different light changes.
Nautilus, one of the living beings having this particular eye structure, can dive 4000 meters deep down. It is for sure that in deep waters, light is very little. And as a result, its eye pupils changes depending on the depth. When it requires more light to detect an image deep down in the ocean, the retina in the eye forms a wider pupil.
The eye structure it has may not be suitable for perceiving objects in three dimensions; however what is really essential for its living is that it should have a light sensitive eye structure. Almighty Allah created its structure in the most suitable form for its needs.
Both fishes and amphibians are created in the most ideal form for their environments. However, either on land or in water, the basic life principles do not change for animals. They need to breathe, to feed (to hunt) and to become the prey. As a result, they need to see the world around and to distinguish their predators and prey from one another. And in order to this, they have very special eyes that can allow them to see underwater or on land. Almighty Allah granted splendid features to these beings with wonderful eye structures, shapes and vision qualities. That our Lord creates such a variety of beings and such a variety of systems belonging to these beings is an instructive sign for all true believers as it is revealed in the Holy Quran:
There is instruction for you in cattle. … (Surah An-Nahl, 66)