Butterflies use warning colors and concentrations of poison within their bodies to ward off predators. They also utilize camouflage, large eye spots, mimicry and flight to avoid being eaten.Continue Reading
Poisonous butterflies, such as monarch butterflies, consume toxic plants. In the case of the monarch, the toxic plant of choice is milk weed. The butterflies are immune to the poison, but they sequester it in their bodies rather than excrete it, so that if a predator eats them, they become sick and develop an aversion to any other butterfly that resembles the one that made them ill.
Poisonous butterflies have flashy wings to reinforce the association between appearance and illness. Some non-poisonous butterflies mimic the appearance of poisonous ones to imply that they too make predators sick.
Other species have enormous spots on their wings that resemble eyes. These eye spots make the animal look much larger when their wings are spread, scaring off and surprising potential predators.
Some butterfly wings are designed to resemble vegetation or tree bark. Some species even have transparent wings. These adaptations serve as camouflage, making it easy for the insects to avoid predators by going unseen.
Finally, butterflies can be fast fliers, and their distinct fluttering motion makes it difficult for predators to determine where they will go next, making pursuit difficult. Butterflies called skippers have been recorded at more than 30 miles per hour.Learn more about Zoology
Many insects, including bees, roaches, butterflies, grasshoppers and ants have six legs. While it is possible for mammals and other land-dwelling animals to be born with six legs, it is extremely rare.Full Answer >
Moths and butterflies differ in their antennae, wings, behavior and pupa stages. One of the easiest ways to distinguish between the two is to look at their antennae in either the larva or adult stages. Butterfly antennae tend to be long-shafted ending at a bulb, while moth antennae are feathery.Full Answer >
Examples of animals that migrate include butterflies, land animals, birds and whales. Animals migrate for a wide variety of reasons, such finding food as the weather changes or mating in specific locations year after year. One of the most well known migrations is the complex, extended migration of the Monarch butterfly. The migration cycle lasts longer than the life span of one butterfly, so no single butterfly makes the entire trip from Canada to Mexico and back again.Full Answer >
Hyenas are apex predators that sit at the top of the food chain. They prey upon a number of herbivores, including gazelles, impalas, wildebeests and zebras. Few animals are capable of catching and killing healthy adult hyenas but lions, leopards, hunting dogs and other hyenas occasionally eat sick and young hyenas.Full Answer >