Could you tell the difference between a human eye and the eye of a tiger, python, or a lemur?

This is the premise behind Armenian photographer Suren Manvelyan's latest collection, which features extreme close-up images showing eyes of animals, birds and reptiles.

The collection includes rodents, hyenas, lemurs, monkeys, tiger pythons, cats, dogs, snakes, birds, a fox and even a flying possum.

Each of the photos in Manvelyan's collection show the complex surface of individual animal eyes.

Many of Manvelyan's images were taken of animals in captivity at Yerevan Zoo in Armenia.

Manvelyan's Animal Eyes collection was a follow-up to his Your Beautiful Eyes series which features extreme close-up images of human eyes.

Although the eyes look different, they work in a very similar way to human eyes.

The main parts of the eye include the cornea, pupil, iris, retina and radial and sphincter muscles.

Wolf Eye

When the animals look around, the light reflected from different objects enter their eyes through the transparent cover called the cornea.

The light then travels into the eye through the pupil.

The pupil is the black circular part in the centre of your eyeball.

Husky Dog

The varying pupil shapes and sizes of the animals in Manvelyan's collection is determined by where in the world they live and how much sunlight they get.

Radial fibres within the iris - the coloured part of the eye- pull the pupil open when it's dark to let more light in and make it easier to see in low-light conditions.

Blue-yellow macaw parrot

Nocturnal animals, such as the Fennec fox, have larger pupils to make easier to see at night.

Sphincter fibres help the pupil contract to restrict how much light enters the eye in bright conditions.

Husky dogs live in very bright conditions in the Arctic, so their pupils are smaller.


The lens focuses the light onto the back of the eye called the retina.

The retina is made of thousands of light-sensitive neurons, called photoreceptors, which change light signals into electrical ones.

These electrical signals are then sent to the brain along the optic nerve and the brain processes what it's looking at in the visual cortex.


When you look at an object it is projected onto your retina upside down.

Your brain then turns it the correct way up. There are some differences, however, depending on the species.

For example, lemurs can only see in black and white so use their sense of smell to choose which food to eat.

And husky dogs can have different coloured eyes because of a condition called heterochromia.


 Long-eared owl

Fennec fox


See more of the photographer's work here.

Responses to "The incredibly detailed photos that reveal animal eyes in extreme close-up"

  1. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely amazing!! Thank you!!

  2. Anonymous says:


  3. Nat says:

    Amazing and a bit scary pictures;)

  4. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely Awesome to see in such detail. Absolutely Amazing!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for this remarkable insight

  6. Anonymous says:

    Talk about a WINDOW TO THE WORLD!!! More like this, please!

  7. Anonymous says:

    A.MAZ.ING photos! And how one's perspective changes when viewed in close-up!

  8. Anonymous says:

    that was an eye opener.

  9. Anonymous says:

    This was really amazing and beautiful. The explanation of differences was easy to understand and see. Thank you.

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