PerspectiveEcholocation

How glass fronts deceive bats

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Science  08 Sep 2017:
Vol. 357, Issue 6355, pp. 977-978
DOI: 10.1126/science.aao2989

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Summary

Bats often navigate rapidly through complex environments by using echolocation, a sensory modality that is profoundly different from human vision (1). Building a sufficient three-dimensional perception of their environment on a lower-dimensional sensory input than human vision, they perform a complex task. They are thus forced to apply a high degree of processing and interpretation to the sensory input, making them prone to sensory deceptions. On page 1045 of this issue, Greif et al. (2) report that vertical mirrorlike reflecting surfaces, which bats perceive as open flyways, can act as sensory traps.