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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wildlife Series - Butterflies. (1995-11)

Butterflies and Moths are members of the order Lepidoptera it means scale winged. Butterflies and Moths together form a single group of around 200,000 known species and new species are continually being described. It is sometimes difficult to tell a butterfly from a moth, but, generally, butterflies are brightly coloured and fly during the day (or, rarely, early evening), whereas the more subtly coloured moths are usually night-fliers.
The antennae of most butterflies are clubbed, rather than straight or feathery, like moths antennae, and butterflies rest with their wings folded upright over their backs, while moths hold them flat and roof-like over the body. Adult butterflies and moths feed on liquid food, which they suck up through along, coiled proboscis.\" Those that feed take flower nectar up through a tube-like proboscis. Some adults take no food, emerging from their cocoons only to mate and die.
Their wings and body are covered in tiny scales, which are really flattened and ridged hairs.
All species undergo complete metamorphosis, and the larvae, or caterpillars, are as varied in colour and shape as the adults.
Butterflies are universally popular and are among the most easily recognizable of all insects.
They seem to have escaped the usual revulsion for some \"creepy crawlies\', probably because they do not sting, bite or carry disease. Unlike other insects, their wings are colourful and opaque and many butterflies are among the most gorgeous of creatures. In the animal kingdom colour is the exception rather than the rule and the butterflies\' kaleidoscope of assorted colours and patterns, used for camouflage, defence and to catch the eye, are unrivalled.
To focus world attention on the need to protect and preserve this vulnerable wildlife species, Pakistan Postal Services Corporation, is issuing a set of four special postage stamps of Rs. 6/- value each depicting beautiful butterflies on September 1, 1995. It is part of the series on wildlife stamps being issued by Pakistan Postal Services Corporation since 1975.