The Science of Nothing
GORE™ OPTIFADE™ Concealment is the incredible technology offered by Beretta to ungulate hunting enthusiasts and to the Xtreme Duckers. It is the first-ever visual concealment pattern based on how animals, rather than humans, see both spatially and colorimetrically.
In order to develop the technology, W.L. Gore & Associates gathered the world’s leading experts in animal vision, fabric technology, camouflage and hunting. In contrast to mimicry and camouflage, which attempt to make the hunter match his environment, GORE™ OPTIFADE™ Concealment actually prevents the animal from recognising the hunter as a predator. The revolutionary idea is to break up the easily- ecognisable symmetry of the human body which animals associate with predators, using macro-patterns and to blend it in with the rest of the environment by using micro-patterns which were designed taking account of the way animals perceive colour and the ratio of positive to negative space. Not simply an imitation of the surrounding environment, it is an innovative form of camouflage that that blends, rather than hiding, enabling the hunter to get incredibly close to the animal. The pattern no longer consists of leaves and shrubs (which are effective at a very close range but become simple, easily-identifiable blocks of colour at a distance), but of shapes that disorientate the animal’s vision at any distance, both in ambush and stalking hunts.
Gore Optifade Forest Pattern
Ungulates have an extremely wide field of view, spanning 280°, which allows them to spot prey, predators and possible threats very quickly. This does however impair their visual acuity and focusing ability: they recognize shapes and spots, but must rely on other senses to identify them better. Forest pattern geometric forms disorientate the animal at any distance, both when hiding and on the move.
Moreover, whilst human beings can see the whole colour scale with trichromatic vision, ungulates have dichromatic vision: they cannot see red, instead seeing the world in yellow, blue and grey. Forest pattern is optimised for a woodland environment taking into account the vertical effect of the trees and closer engagement distances.
The New Gore Optifade Waterfowl Pattern
Waterfowl have a large, almost panoramic, field of vision. Their visual acuity is very good for an animal, though not superior to the acuity of the human eye. Waterfowl have a fourth photo-receptor that allows them to see some colours that humans cannot see. Waterfowl are therefore particularly sensitive to color and its continuity. The color elements and the micro-patterns texture help the hunter to blend into the surroundings: they are extremely detailed in order to confuse the birds’ view and use colors specifically designed to create effects of extreme depth and visual contrast. As in the Forest version, the macro-pattern is responsible for breaking up the symmetry of the human silhouette.
While most patterns are designed as though the prey is on the ground looking at the hunter, the waterfowl pattern takes into account the fact that the birds are usually above the hunter in flight, and in constant motion. The macro-pattern has more of a vertical emphasis than patterns designed for ground-level prey. It is optimised for a 45° engagement trajectory and an engagement distance of approximately 35 metres. Waterfowl hunting is done in a high contrast environment. Light from the horizon, or light reflected from the water’s surface, will shine through gaps in rushes, creating concentrated light spots. The Waterfowl Pattern is high contrast in order to match the environment.