Butterfly Mimicry

Why do some butterflies have eyes on their wings?


At a glance, you might feel like these images are looking back at you. These are actually close-up views of butterfly wings with patterns called "false eyes." This is a form of mimicry, where an organism evolves to look like, or mimic, another one – usually to protect itself from predators. A hungry bird may be reluctant to eat something that appears to be looking back at it and is perhaps dangerous! The DNA barcode of the butterfly is also part of each painting.