Sheep Eye Dissection

The anatomy of the human eye can be better shown and understood by the actual dissection of an eye. One eye of choice for dissection, that closely resembles the human eye, is that of the sheep. Sheep eyes are removed at the time the animal is slaughtered and then preserved for later use. Differences between the two eye types will be mentioned as the dissection is completed.

Begin the dissection by gathering the equipment and supplies listed here. (sheep eye, dissecting pan, surgeons gloves, scissors, single edge razor blade, probe, forceps, paper towels and a notebook and pencil for recording information about the eye as it is dissected.)

 Step 1: Wash the sheep eye in running water to remove the preservative fluid. Dry the eye with paper toweling. Examine the front of the eye and locate the eye-lid, cornea, sclera (white of the eye) and fatty tissue. Examine the back of the eye and find extrinsic muscle bundles, fatty tissue and the optic nerve. The four extrinsic muscles (humans have six) move the sheep eye while the fatty tissue cushions the eye. If the optic nerve is not visible use the probe to move the fatty tissue around until the nerve is exposed. Take the notes you need to record what you have observed so far.

 Click here to continue the dissection