Have you ever noticed- in one of your walks through one of Portland’s many beautiful parks- that squirrels’ eyes, unlike humans, don’t exactly face forward? What about those hummingbirds that you see feeding out your window every morning- have you ever noticed that their eyes don’t exactly face forward either?
It was through simple observations like these that I was led to a question for my thesis at Pacific University: why, unlike squirrels and hummingbirds, do modern humans have eyes that face forward? What sort of benefit does that trait provide to us today, and what was it about that trait that was useful to our evolutionary ancestors in their particular environments such that it would eventually be passed down?
Over the next few weeks, I’ll be taking some time here to unpack and share what I found. I’ll try to keep things fresh and interesting, and I hope you enjoy this series!