Talk about nature getting weird, and this one seems to be the perfect example. Of the 3.5 million species put for display at the entymology collection at Drexel University’s Academy of Natural Sciences, a rare creature that is half male- half female has been found.
This butterfly is known as Lexias Pardalis and can be easily spotted out thanks to half its body being covered in markings that are typically found on the male members of its species, and half covered in female markings.
“I thought: ‘Somebody’s fooling with me. It’s just too perfect,'” said Chris Johnson, the volunteer who made the discovery while working on the Academy’sButterflies! exhibit. “Then I got goosebumps.”
“It slowly opened up, and the wings were so dramatically different, it was immediately apparent what it was,” he added.
This rare butterfly is basically an example of a condition known as bilateral gynadromorphy.
“Gynandromorphism is most frequently noticed in bird and butterfly species where the two sexes have very different coloration,” said Jason Weintraub, the Academy’s entomology-collection manager. “It can result from non-disjunction of sex chromosomes, an error that sometimes occurs during the division of chromosomes at a very early stage of development.”
It is believed that this rare butterfly came from a butterfly farm on the Penang Island in Malaysia- the right side of its body is covered with yellow and white spots on a brown background, which is typically observed in females, while the left side of the body is iridescent black with greenish blue wings- observed in males.
This butterfly has a small lifespan, and while it is still alive, it will be available for display to visitors from January 17 to February 16.