Old 01-23-2011, 08:12 PM #1
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Default Laser in the Zoo

Hey,

I took my one year old daughter to the zoo today, and used the opportunity to satisfy my curiosity about which animals would react to a laser and how.

Grabbed one of my greenies, same one that drives my cats crazy.

The results were mostly disappointing, almost all animals didn't react - either they don't see it, or they just don't care. I was surprised that the "big cats" (lions, tigers and cheetas) didn't respond to it at all!

Best reactions were from monkeys - they were half scared half curios, at first moved back but then tried to grab the dot, it was quite funny to mess with them (one of the pictures below show it very well).

Wild goats (Capras) also noticed it, most of them moved back, but a big one tried to bite it.

Almost all bird species notice the laser, most of them scared by it.

Other animals that didn't react at all include: Rhinos, Elephents, Giraffes, Hippos, Boars, Deers, Wild Rabbits, Ostriches. Probably more that I forget.

(Note: no animal was lazed in the eyes or in the face, I was extra careful).

Some pictures we took:

Two young monkeys looking at the laser.


Old and fat monkey, this one tried to grab the laser just as long as it was within its hands range.


Wild goats staring at the laser, the one in the center looks like it's trying to ram the laser, but it actually tried to bite it


Lazy tiger... (laser dot in motion)


Two photos of boar like animals seeing the laser



That's me with my laser inside a dome in the habitat of the wild rabbits (not showing in photo). They were not impressed by the laser...


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Old 01-23-2011, 08:22 PM #2
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

You should be more careful shining it out of the dome, it could of easily reflected back and hit you in the eye !!!
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Old 01-23-2011, 08:32 PM #3
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

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Originally Posted by Kookapeli View Post
You should be more careful shining it out of the dome, it could of easily reflected back and hit you in the eye !!!
I'm always very careful. The dome may look like shiny glass in the photo, but it's actually a murky plastic dome with barely any reflection. And the laser is not powerful enough to do any harm in a split second exposure.

I appreciate your comment though, I wouldn't want to encourage anyone else to be irresponsible.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:55 PM #4
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

Why does one of the goats have a dart stuck in them.??

The bottom Right side of the 3rd Picture.?
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:04 PM #5
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

Very interesting, i always been curious about how different animals would react, specially big cats .

In my own short experience i have noted that the younger the animal the more amused (or scared) is by the lasers, adult animals not so much even if it is a cat or dog
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:16 PM #6
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

Quote:
Originally Posted by lazeerer View Post
Why does one of the goats have a dart stuck in them.??

The bottom Right side of the 3rd Picture.?
Funny, I didn't notice it back in the zoo...
I guess it's some sort of a tag the zoo keepers use.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Weltall View Post
Very interesting, i always been curious about how different animals would react, specially big cats .

In my own short experience i have noted that the younger the animal the more amused (or scared) is by the lasers, adult animals not so much even if it is a cat or dog
True, kittens always seem to enjoy chasing a laser. Many of them lose interest as they grow, but not all. I have a cat 11 years old still enjoys chasing lasers.
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:11 PM #7
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

It's a trank dart! It's no tag lol!
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:25 PM #8
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

I've noticed skunks don't mind a laser even at night, but have seen bears run from it like they were on fire! -Glenn
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Old 01-23-2011, 11:32 PM #9
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

Most probably someone already posted this video here, i cant remember where i got the link to it...

Anyways this thread reminded me of this video

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Old 01-24-2011, 12:58 AM #10
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

I think one of the reasons few animals reacted to the dot is that you tried in daylight, and on a sunny day by the looks of things.

People that have their pets chase the dot mostly do so indoors with less ambient light, so the dot stands out more. It wouldn't surprise me if that tiger would actually chase the dot in dim/dark conditions, but couldn't be bothered during daytime. Also, tigers are nocturnal hunters, so during daytime you may just have interrupted its catnap
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Old 01-24-2011, 01:16 AM #11
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

It is very interesting. 
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Old 01-27-2011, 05:27 AM #12
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

It's more of an eyesight issue, I think. Birds have especially good vision, especially to green light, as do monkeys and apes. The cats I am not sure of... as they didn't react, but I assume it has to do with them having better night vision (a higher absorption of near IR light, perhaps?) I think I will try to do an experiment at my zoo to see what animals see what, and see if it varies from species to species.... hell, it could even lead to some data that I can use to explain species adaptation... (I am a biologist )

An interesting side note of birds... if you shine a 405nm laser into the sky, birds will react to it (Sometimes crazily) because they have a 4th kind of way to sense light, which goes into the UV range of 370nm. Thus, your 405nm laser could possibly be as bright to them as a green beam is to you

Crazy, isn't it?
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Old 01-27-2011, 02:55 PM #13
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Default Re: Laser in the Zoo

I tried red and greens on cats on the streets .. they do react, but mostly they just stop for a while, and then go minding their business. I guess they are in different mode then in the living room.
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