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Arthanari Chandrasekaran

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Why human species is not as colorful as Butterfly, Fish and other Birds.

I see there are many different varieties of fish all in different colors and patterns. But why humans are not having varied colors like red blue or green.

What scientific factors cause this and how would the world have been if there are humans in all the colors of rainbows?

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    Jul 19 2012: If we were all colorful it would be harder to appreciate all the nice and colorful things that we get to see like beautiful landscapes, sunsets, and art .On a scientific level, maybe color’s primary role may be that of safety for us, a lot of poisonous predators are brightly colored, it would be easier to remember to stay clear of certain colors rather than trying to remember all the dangerous critters out there. As for humans being colorful, the Phoenicians would not have been known for their famous purple dye, and royalty would have had to find something other than purple to show their status, but who knows how we would fair multi-colored. However, racism may never have existed, unless people started picking on your hue and saturation.
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    Jul 22 2012: Mammals do not possess the pigments for those colours. Mammals can be red/orange/yellow/brown/black/white. Try to think of a blue or green mammal. You would think, with all the green in the world there would be some green mammals that live in trees, but there aren't. They all are the colour of bark for camouflage, like squirrels.

    Why this is the case, I do not know, but it probably has to do with the descendants of the first mammals millions of years ago.
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      Jul 22 2012: Natural selection, squirrel the colour of tree bark isn't spotted by an eagle but a bright pink squirrel (just an example) is easily spotted and the eagle kills it and hence has it's genes removed from the gene pool which allows the bark coloured squirrel to mate and pass on his/ her genes.
      And for birds colour, due to a lack of predators they generally develop colours from natural sexual selection. By this I mean the females of a species pick the nicest looking males they can find. And if a bird has a blue plumage mutation he'll be chosen over a normal coloured bird and hence colours develop as they're preferred by females and hence those genes are passed on.
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    Jul 19 2012: Joyce Kilmer gave the credit to God for creationism .. perhaps nature has planned that the male of the species be bright in color and the female to be subdued for survival. The male draws attention of the predator to chase after him to save the female and the nest. Some say that animals do not see colors ... I am not convienced.

    As for humans not having bright colors ... Most are green with envy, red with rage, and have black hearts.

    All the best. Bob.
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      Jul 19 2012: It's actually quite easy to test for colour vision. You take a cat for example show it a screen with alternate coloured stripes and then move the stripes. The cat won't react as the cat just sees a grey screen. You only see the stripes if you have colour vision. The same sort of testing is done to identify colour-blindness in kids that are too young to do the Ishihara test.
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    Jul 19 2012: It's actually very simple. Mammals in general don't have colour vision so colours are pretty much irrelevant. Higher primates like humans evolved colour vision relatively recently, probably as a way to see ripe fruit at a distance. One response to this development is that some monkeys (mandrills for example) have developed bright colours. perhaps over the next million years or so humans will develop bright colours.
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    Jul 18 2012: I feel human did / need not to use it's colour for it's adaptation purpose to win the race of "survival of the fittest" that's why................
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    Jul 18 2012: I think it is because we choose our mates on other criteria. for example, it is unlikely that the loudest and most colourfully dressed guy at a party will take home the babe.
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    Jul 18 2012: When I look at Lady Gaga I do not see how you can come to that conclusion.
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    Jul 18 2012: Chimpanzees, gorillas, baboons, humans... primates don't really need colourful displays to carry on their business. Perhaps their is a link with brain size, as pratham suggests. We're smart enough to know which is which, and we're great at figuring out body language.
    Interesting, however, to note the tendency today for massive coloration on young females. One wonders what kind of animal they're trying to attract. Perhaps one that is as much in a hurry as short-lived butterflies.
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    Jul 18 2012: ...because human uses their brain to CUSTOMIZE themselves :)
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      Jul 18 2012: By customize do you mean the wardrobe?

      if yes, the color that i wonder does't apply to humans is of the skin color. Do you mean because we wear costumes the color genes in our body got suppressed.
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        Jul 18 2012: no !!! we are taught to give a thought over our instincts, other species are not able to give second thought on whatever they have or whatever they are doing ... may be because of this they are not able to change themselves as we did or doing....