Marie the scientist 『Why do Zebras have eyes on the sides?』
Why do Zebras have eyes on the sides?
We had a school trip to the zoo today.
Zebras were eating grass and Lions were sleeping.
Then, I realized something.
Their eyes are in different places.
Zebras have eyes on the sides of their faces.
But Lions’ eyes are in the front.
I decided to ask a zookeeper about it.
“Hello, I’m Mary.
Are you a zookeeper?”
“Yes, I am”
May I ask you something?”
What is it?”
“Lions have eyes on the front of their faces.
Why do Zebras have eyes on the sides?”
“You have a great eye, Mary.
I have a question for you.
Do you know what Lions eat in the wild?
“They eat other animals”
They are hunters.
Lions have eyes on the front so they can be good hunters”
“What do you mean?”
“Animals with eyes on the front can see things in three dimensions”
“You mean 3D?”
If you can see things in 3D, that means you can measure the distance between things.
Humans have eyes in the front too.
Let’s test your eyes.
Bring one finger in front of your face and close your left eye.
Can you see your finger?’
“Now open your left eye and close your right eye”
“Ha, I see my finger.
But I think it move a little”
“We all see that way.
Our left eye and right eye are a few centimeters away from each other.
So they are looking from different places and create two different images.
The two images are sent to a brain and put together as a 3D image.
When it’s in 3D, our brain can measure the distance between things.
“Wow, I didn’t know that.
Wait a minute.
Then that means Zebras won’t know when Lions come close to them.
Ahh, I feel sorry for them”
“You are kind, Mary’
Zebras can’t measure distance well.
But they can see more than Lions.
Because their eyes are on the sides.
“Let’s try something else.
Bring one finger next to your right ear”
“Keep looking straight ahead.
Can you see your finger?”
“Now take that finger to the back of your ear.
Can you still see it?”
“Not any more”
But Zebras can”
“Oh, I understand.
They have eyes on the sides so they can see more than we can”
“You are a fast learner.
Zebras can see more than Lions so they can run away before Lions get close”
“So Lions have eyes in the front to be good hunters and Zebras have eyes on the sides to run away better.
Thank you so much”
It’s too bad I don’t have eyes on the sides, too.
I wish I could run away from,,,
“Mary, I was looking for you.
Can you clean the bathtub now?”
“Ah, Yes, Mom,,”