We were captivated by the stunning details of the animal eyes captured by photographer Brad Wilson in his animal portrait series Affinity. What sorts of wild souls belong to these exotic peepers?

 Brad Wilson's early education in the visual arts began at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he studied art history and studio art.

 From there he moved on to both the Maine and Santa Fe Photographic Workshops to focus exclusively on photography before settling in New York City.

 In New York, Brad worked with a number of notable photographers and then began his own career in the commercial and fine-art genres.

Eurasian eagle owl

Alligator eyesight is specially adapted for hunting in low light. At night, an alligator’s eyes will shine out red in the dark, the way a cat’s eyes will flash yellow. This phenomenon, called “eye-shine,” is caused by the tapetum lucidum, a layer of cells beneath the rods and cones in the alligator’s retina. This layer of cells reflects light back into those rods and cones, enhancing the alligator’s low light vision. (Source)

A “black panther” is not actually a separate species, but is a term refers to any big cat with totally black coloration thanks to genetic mutations. Black leopards, like the one above, and black jaguars are the most commonly observed types of black panthers.

The capuchin monkey’s eyesight is much more fine-tuned for living in daylight compared to its nocturnal cousin the owl monkey. Capuchin retinas have more cone cells than rod cells, while it’s the opposite in owl monkeys. Cones help distinguish between colors, while rods are more light-sensitive.

The caracal, also known as the desert lynx, can bring down rodents, monkeys, antelopes and birds—it can leap up to 10 feet in the air to snatch a meal on the wing. Scientists think the caracal uses the long tufts on its ears to communicate with other caracals.

Owl eyes, like the ones of this flammulated owl, are tube-shaped, rather than round, which increases the size of their cornea (the transparent part of the eye at the front, over the iris and pupil) relative to the rest of the eye. While tubular eyes allow the owl to see great distances at low light, this also means that the owl can’t focus on close-up objects, and they can’t move their eyes in their sockets—a problem solved by having an incredibly flexible neck that allows them to twist their heads almost entirely around.

The mountain lion, like many nocturnal creatures, has a retina that contains more rod cells than cone cells, bumping up its ability to distinguish details in low light conditions.

The seriema’s eyes have one feature that’s fairly rare among birds: Eyelashes. This South American bird is a quick runner and omnivorous hunter, often dispatching its prey by throwing it against rocks or the ground.

The serval, like many other wild cats, has forward-facing eyes that endow it with binocular vision, giving it the depth and distance perception it needs to chase down prey. Forward-facing eyes also confer some disadvantages, including large blind spots that can let other animals sneak up on you unawares.

White tigers get their characteristic coat and eye color thanks to a mutation in the gene SLC45A2, which renders them unable to produce yellow-orange pigments, but still able to make black-brown pigments.

Zebras, like many prey animals, have eyes on the sides of their heads. This gives them better peripheral vision to guard against predators creeping up behind them or from the side. It also creates a blind spot right in front of the zebra, which has to compensate by using its sense of smell.
All photos courtesy Brad Wilson 

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