An insect's first flying lessons
The butterfly exits from its pupa head-first and immediately pumps blood into the network of veins, and the limp wings begin to take their shape. Now the blood is withdrawn from the veins of the wing and the veins harden to create rigid struts, at which point the wings are ready for their maiden flight. All further growth has ceased, and they use food collected when they were larvae and stored as body tissue. Some species like Mayflies do not even have mouthparts. In this adult stage their primary function is to find a mate. However, unlike the larvae, butterflies have large compound eyes, that are sensitive to most wavelengths. The colours and patterns on their wings are created by tiny scales which have pigments and microscopic structures that split light, reflecting back a narrower range of wavelengths. These colourful wing patterns may be useful for species recognition and mating.