See those tiny blue specs? LOOK CLOSER…those TEENY TINY dots are individual scales that cover the wings of butterflies and moths. In 1735, Carl Linnaeus classified butterflies and moths in one scientific order together called Lepidoptera, which is Latin for “scaly wing”. These scales, which obviously provide color, also help the animal camouflage, thermoregulate, deter predators, and of course, attract mates…(woo!). Photo by yours truly @gocmnh. #themoreyouknow #lepidoptera #butterflies #scicomm

Notes and butterfly sketches by Titian Ramsay Peale II (1799–1885).

Readers can now enjoy a long-hidden treasure of natural history with the release of The Butterflies of North America: Titian Peale’s Lost Manuscript. Based on a never-before-published manuscript preserved for nearly a century in the American Museum of Natural History’s Rare Book Collection, the book is packed with color plates bearing Peale’s beautiful illustrations of butterflies and caterpillars. 

Learn more about this new publication