After early postnatal ablation of one superior colliculus together with the ipsilateral eye in Syrian hamsters, retinofugal fibers abnormally cross the tectal midline and innervate the remaining superior colliculus. The fibers of this aberrant decussation are confined mainly to the superficial gray layer, with little ingrowth or termination in the deeper stratum opticum; laterally, most termination is in the superficial part of the superficial gray. Establishment of this abnormal pattern is temporally correlated with the appearance of oligodendrocytes at progressively more superficial locations in the colliculus. Oligodendrocytes express, on their surface, molecules that are inhibitory to neurite growth. This raises the possibility that their differential distribution in the superior colliculus during growth of retinal fibers is causally involved in the generation of the observed termination pattern. We tested this hypothesis by applying the monoclonal antibody IN-1, which neutralizes this inhibitory activity, during the time of postnatal fiber growth and terminal arbor formation. We found that in the presence of IN-1, but not a control antibody, recrossing retinofugal fibers, observed at postnatal day 12, traverse the stratum opticum as well as the superficial gray, with greater depth of termination in superficial gray and stratum opticum. This pattern resembles that of the normal contralateral retinotectal projection. The results indicate that neurite growth inhibitors expressed by oligodendrocytes are responsible for restricting the innervation of a target area in postnatal plasticity.