There is some sexual dimorphism in this species. Males are less colourful, with smaller eyespots and much reduced orange areas on the upper forewings. They are also much more active and range far about. Females fly less and often may not away from the area where they grew up.
The evolutionary significance of the upperwing eyespots is probably defence against predators. Small, peripheral eyespots deflect the attacks of birds to non-vital parts of the body. They can fly perfectly well when their wings have one or two beak-shaped clips on them.
Food plants[change | change source]
References[change | change source]
- Stevens, Martin 2005. The role of eyespots as anti-predator mechanisms, principally demonstrated in the Lepidoptera. Biological Reviews 80(4): 573–588