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Butterflies

 

Butterfly Feet illustration

Taste With Your Feet?

When a butterfly walks across a delicious-tasting liquid, it stops.

Then it uncurls a tube from its mouth and sucks up the juice.

But how do butterflies know that something is good to eat just by walking on it?

They can taste with their feet!

Wouldn't it be fun if YOU could taste with your feet!

 

Shimmering Wings!

 Monarch butterfly

  • A butterfly's wings are covered with tiny scales. Each scale has its own color. Together, the scales make a pattern.

 

  • Most scales get their colors from chemicals called pigments.

 

  • But some scales show special colors that appear when light hits them in a certain way. Tiny ridges on these scales scatter the light in different directions. This makes shimmery, shiny iridescent (ear-ih-DES-sent) colors that change as the butterfly moves.

 

  • Guess what? Butterfly wings aren’t the only places to see these iridescent colors. Ask your mom if she has any jewelry made with a gemstone called opal or any real pearls. These glitter in the light, too!

    Want to help butterflies find good things to eat? Then why not plant a butterfly garden?

  Butterfly_MikeBaird

Taste With Your Feet Part of This Article by Dan Guynn, Jr.

Art by Jack Desrocher

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