Cookies Policy
X

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Are Birds the Primary Selective Force Leading to Evolution of Mimicry and Aposematism in Butterflies? An Opposing Point of View

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Behaviour

Birds are universally considered to be the primary selective force leading to the evolution of mimicry in butterflies and the evolution of aposematic coloration. This concept does not take into account the visual capabilities of birds. In this paper it is argued that the aerial hawker insectivorous birds, which are the primary predators of butterflies, are not able to differentiate the separate elements in the color patterns of flying butterflies. They cannot distinguish details in color of the markings or their shape, size, and distribution. As a consequence, birds cannot serve as a selective force for evolution of mimicry and aposematic coloration in these insects. Many aspects of vision, and especially vision in birds, on which my conclusions are based are discussed in detail. The different morphological and behavioral characteristics of butterflies, especially their flight characteristics, correlate with their profitability as a source of energy and nutrients. The flight pattern of the butterfly is the first stimulus that the bird sees, not the color pattern. It is this characteristic flight pattern, not the bright aposematic coloration pattern, that birds are able to recognize and then learn rapidly to associate visually with the profitability of the prey. The characteristic flight behavior signals to the bird whether the prey is energetically profitable or not, thus whether to attack or ignore a potential prey. The ability to distinguish prey types by flight pattern allows the bird to conserve energy and maximize its feeding efficiency.

10.1163/156853903322127922
/content/journals/10.1163/156853903322127922
dcterms_title,pub_keyword,dcterms_description,pub_author
6
3
Loading
Loading

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156853903322127922
Loading

Data & Media loading...

http://brill.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.1163/156853903322127922
Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1163/156853903322127922
2003-04-01
2016-12-10

Sign-in

Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
     
    Behaviour — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation