Genus Caligo Owl Butterfly Wing Posters
The Caligo genus are tropical butterflies belonging to the Brassolidae Family. They possess huge eyespots on their ventral hindwings and often have iridescent forewings. The eyespots startle or disorient predators while the ripple pattern helps to break up the edge of the wing as the butterfly rests. Notably, this ripple pattern is applied in a random pattern that differs from the left and right wing surfaces.
From a developmental perspective, the formation of a butterfly wing pattern is the result of a complex coordination of processes, timing and genetics. The mechanics that determine the ground scales (background), pigmentation, pattern element size, shape, position, and symmetry, ultimately determine the pattern. Experiments have revealed pattern determination is established and finalized within the first few days after the caterpillar enters its pupal stage. At this time, the wing views, the wing shape, the epidermal membrane, pattern elements and coloration are determined. At the root of the pattern development mechanism is the diffusion of a morphogenic substance through the epidermal layers. These diffusions, controlled by activating and inhibiting enzymes, result in gradients of the morphogenic substance. Reaction thresholds based on the concentration of the morphogen determine the contours of the actual pattern elements. Some pattern elements are formed from the source position of the morphogen while others are initiated by the absence of the morphogen (concentration sink). The exact pattern shapes are usually formed from the contours generated from the addition of multiple morphogen gradient sources or inhibitions. Controlled by genetic and environmental factors, the final pattern might best be described as a developmental freeze-frame at the beginning of pupal stage when the pattern finalized.
Whether you focus on the micro architecture of an individual scale cell, or prefer to sit back and enjoy the ethereal beauty of form and design in motion as a butterfly skirts the thermals, it is easy to see why this order of insects have become so revered.