Life in color

Color kaleidoscope

Emerald Green Butterfly Papilio palinurus

Emerald green Butterfly Papilio palinurus

Life in color. Emerald Green Butterfly Papilio palinurus

Known as Papilio palinurus, Emerald Green Butterfly lives in South-East Asia. It is the most beautiful of the few green butterflies. The amazing butterfly has a forked tail, and is also called the Emerald peacock swallowtail or peacock. There are several varieties in Southeast Asia (the Philippines, Burma, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand). Male butterflies have brighter coloration than female species. The wingspan is 8-10 cm. The main background of the wings is black, powder-coated green scales. On the wings are wide strips of green color. Tails rear wings widened markedly to an end. The iridescent green sheen of the bands of this butterfly is not produced by pigments, but is structural coloration produced by the micro structure of the wing scales.

Emerald Swallowtail (Papilio palinurus). Photo D. Gordon E. Robertson

Papilio palinurus, or Emerald Swallowtail. Photo D. Gordon E. Robertson

The wing scales refract the light and give rise to blue, turquoise and yellow visible reflections, producing the perception of green color when additively mixed.

Palinurus – the character of ancient mythology. Falling asleep, he fell into the sea, destroyed by God’s Dream. He got to the shore, but was killed by local savages. After him was named this beautiful butterfly of emerald color – Papilio painurus.

The main purpose of so appealing to the human eye colored butterflies – protection from predators. It is difficult to see winged creature on a background of foliage, so Palinuro can safely live in the wild, even if the life consists of seven or ten days. Yes, life of these delightful green butterflies, like any other, is short. When the butterfly dies, it means that some soul is dying. The Aztecs believed that the happy dead from the other world, in the form of beautiful butterflies visit their relatives in order to convince them that they are happy in the world of dead.

Emerald Green Butterfly