A Spider’s Eye: Another Example of Design in Nature


A wee female jumping spider, Phidippus workmani. Photo: Thomas Shahan.

From the article:   http://www.wired.com/2014/04/spider-vision-made-clear/ and  https://youtu.be/gvN_ex95IcE[Emphasis Mine.]

“ … Spider eyes are different from insect eyes; they are not compound but simple. There is one lens for each eye, made of a thin layer of the cuticle. Below that is the retina, the actual light-detecting cells. Jumping spiders have a problem–how do they focus their eye? They don’t have an iris like we do, and their lens is solid.

The easiest way to deal with this is to angle your head, and you can see the spider carefully tilting his head to get a better look at the videographer pestering him. It’s those adorable head tilts that make photos of jumping spiders so very cute.

But for fine focus, more is needed. The evolutionary work-around for this (if you are a jumping spider) is to have eyes that are a bit of a tube: … “

Read more at the article …

Diagram of a Salticid eye, From the fabulously named paper, 'Eight-legged cats' and how they see". Illustration: Fair Use; OA primary research

Diagram of a Salticid eye, from the fabulously named paper, “‘Eight-legged cats’ and how they see”. Illustration: Fair Use; OA primary research

 In evolutionary literature, theory and thinking, no room is left for any kind of forward intentional ‘trying’ to achieve a desirable result such as the spider eye shown above. The eye is simply the unintentional result of Natural Selection created by the evolutionary deity ‘Deep Time.’

But if you look at the diagram above, and view the video’s and read the text you see what seems to be a clear case for Intelligent Design in a number of areas.

In the schematic above, you see a helper lens embedded within the eye structure whose purpose is to enable focusing on potential prey.

Also seen are layers of photo sensors which enable the spider to see colors – probably designed to allow a differentiation between the prey and the background, and thus increase the efficiency of hunting.

And then there are the additional, and more conventional eyes designed to allow a wide field of view.

In short, this example is a fairly simple and clear example of intentional design in nature, and not at all an ‘evolutionary work-around’ as simply asserted in the article.


P.S. Interestingly enough, I came across this article in Jerry Coyne’s blog. I don’t often visit Coyne’s blog, but on occasion I visit it just out of curiosity.

I quit following Coyne a few years back. First, he seems to have abandoned his career in science and has become a professional Atheist – seldom will you find science on his blog, but rather rather virulent bashing of religion of all sorts; very nice nature pictures; and pictures and stories about cats.  I think this abandonment of science is due  to his career long failure to successfully evolve a fruit fly.

And, I found that none of my contrary  comments ever saw the light of day, and on close examination I found that close to 100% of the comments were in support of Coyne’s positions.

But with the article referenced above, it seems that Coyne slipped and allowed a “Divine foot in the door.”

Don Johnson – August 2015    

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