Retinal architecture in birds and mammals
The main aim of my thesis is to analyse the retinal topographic organization of different neuronal populations in the retina of birds and mammals. I use a wide range of bird and mammal species to investigate how malleable the topographic arragement of retinal neurons is in relation to ecology and behaviour. Also, using microspectrophotometry, I analyse the spectral properties of photoreceptor cells in the retina of birds.
Understanding how the retina of different species is organized, and which pressures have acted upon the maintenance or variation of a given retinal trait, represents a fundamental question in comparative evolutionary neuroscience. In additon, expanding our view on how different bird and mammal species use vision to forage, select mates and avoid natural enemies allows us to make informed decisions in conservation and management plans of a given species.