Dr Misha Vorobyev

DipPhys (Leningrad), PhD (USSR Acad. Sci.)

Research | Current

  • Chromatic and achromatic vision birds and fish
  • Insect colour vision in relation to flower colours
  • Ecological relevance of primate colour vision
  • Neural noise and encoding of visual information

The main theme of my research is the relationship between colour vision systems and colourful patterns of plant and animals. I use psychophysical methods to study colour vision of man and animals. To understand the ecological significance of diversity of colour vision systems I combine mathematical modelling with measuring spectra of biologically important objects - flowers, fruits, birds’ plumage and fish skin.

See details at:


My  reserch has attracted over 4000 citations (h index - 34, 13 papers cited over 100 times each).



Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

  • Nahmad-Rohen, L., & Vorobyev, M. (2019). Contrast sensitivity and behavioural evidence for lateral inhibition in octopus. Biology letters, 15 (5)10.1098/rsbl.2019.0134
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/48335
  • Cheney, K. L., Green, N. F., Vibert, A. P., Vorobyev, M., Marshall, N. J., Osorio, D. C., & Endler, J. A. (2019). An Ishihara-style test of animal colour vision. The Journal of experimental biology, 222 (Pt 1).10.1242/jeb.189787
  • Osorio, D., & Vorobyev, M. (2018). Principles and application of the receptor noise model of color discrimination: a comment on Olsson et al. Behavioral Ecology, 29 (2), 283-284. 10.1093/beheco/arx153
  • Mitchell, L., Cheney, K. L., Cortesi, F., Marshall, N. J., & Vorobyev, M. (2017). Triggerfish uses chromaticity and lightness for object segregation. Royal Society Open Science, 4 (12).10.1098/rsos.171440
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/44700
  • Newport, C., Green, N. F., McClure, E. C., Osorio, D. C., Vorobyev, M., Marshall, N. J., & Cheney, K. L. (2017). Fish use colour to learn compound visual signals. Animal Behaviour, 125, 93-100. 10.1016/j.anbehav.2017.01.003
  • Toomey, M. B., Lind, O., Frederiksen, R., Curley, R. W., Riedl, K. M., Wilby, D., ... Roberts, N. W. (2016). Complementary shifts in photoreceptor spectral tuning unlock the full adaptive potential of ultraviolet vision in birds. eLife, 5.10.7554/eLife.15675
  • Champ, C. M., Vorobyev, M., & Marshall, N. J. (2016). Colour thresholds in a coral reef fish. Royal Society Open Science, 3 (9)10.1098/rsos.160399
    URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2292/33475
  • Hempel de Ibarra, N., Langridge, K. V., & Vorobyev, M. (2015). More than colour attraction: Behavioural functions of flower patterns. Current Opinion in Insect Science, 12, 64-70. 10.1016/j.cois.2015.09.005

Contact details

Primary office location

M&HS BUILDING 503 - Bldg 503
Level 3, Room 369
New Zealand