A butterfly eye's view of birds

  title={A butterfly eye's view of birds},
  author={Francesca D. Frentiu and Adriana D. Briscoe},
The striking color patterns of butterflies and birds have long interested biologists. But how these animals see color is less well understood. Opsins are the protein components of the visual pigments of the eye. Color vision has evolved in butterflies through opsin gene duplications, through positive selection at individual opsin loci, and by the use of filtering pigments. By contrast, birds have retained the same opsin complement present in early‐jawed vertebrates, and their visual system has… 

The evolution of red color vision is linked to coordinated rhodopsin tuning in lycaenid butterflies

A robust heterologous expression system to purify invertebrate rhodopsins is developed, specific amino acid changes responsible for adaptive spectral tuning are identified, and molecular variation in invertebrates opsins underlie wavelength sensitivity shifts that enhance visual perception are pinpointed.

UV Photoreceptors and UV-Yellow Wing Pigments in Heliconius Butterflies Allow a Color Signal to Serve both Mimicry and Intraspecific Communication

These results are the best available evidence for the correlated evolution of a color signal and color vision and suggest that predator visual systems are error prone in the context of mimicry.

Evolutionary history limits species' ability to match colour sensitivity to available habitat light

The results suggest that animals do adapt to their light environment; however, the invertebrate–vertebrate evolutionary divergence may limit the degree to which animals can perform visual tuning.

Opsin clines in butterflies suggest novel roles for insect photopigments.

The results suggest that opsin diversification in this butterfly is more consistent with natural selection unrelated to spectral tuning, and the possibility that insect opsins might have important, yet-to-be elucidated, adaptive functions in mediating animal responses to abiotic factors, such as temperature or photoperiod is discussed.

Extrinsic Versus Intrinsic Control of Avian Communication Based on Colorful Plumage Porphyrins

Synthesis of patterns indicated that VS visual systems always evolved prior to colorful plumage porphyrins, suggesting a sensory bias for plumage pigments based on signal-receptor alignment.

Butterfly dichromatism primarily evolved via Darwin's, not Wallace's, model

It is shown that male coloration evolved faster than female coloration, especially in strongly dichromatic clades, with male contribution to changes in dichromatism roughly twice that of females.

Ultraviolet and yellow reflectance but not fluorescence is important for visual discrimination of conspecifics by Heliconius erato

The results suggest that the use of 3-OHK pigmentation instead of ancestral yellow was driven by sexual selection rather than predation, which predators find similarly aposematic compared with the ancestral yellow pigments used by non-Heliconius mimics.

Limited variation in visual sensitivity among bowerbird species suggests that there is no link between spectral tuning and variation in display colouration

Spect spectral sensitivity among bowerbird species that occupy different visual habitats and are highly diverged in plumage and decoration colour displays is compared, suggesting that bowerbirds may represent a transitional stage in the evolution from the ancestral violet-sensitive- to the derived ultraviolet- sensitive-type short-wavelength-sensitive1-based visual system found in younger passerine lineages.

Complex dynamics underlie the evolution of imperfect wing pattern convergence in butterflies

Although these data reveal the first evidence for protection from avian predators by the supposed toxic, Rubiaceae‐feeding Adelpha species, it is concluded that imprecise mimetic patterns have high costs for Batesian mimics in the tropics.



Reconstructing the ancestral butterfly eye: focus on the opsins

A model for the patterning of the ancestral butterfly eye that is most closely aligned with the nymphalid eye is proposed, which underwent an adaptive expansion based on lineage-specific B and LW opsin gene multiplications and on alterations in the spatial expression of opsins within the eye.

Adaptive evolution of color vision as seen through the eyes of butterflies

The data show that some of the same amino acid sites are under positive selection in the photopigments of both butterflies and primates, spanning an evolutionary distance >500 million years.

Evolution of color and vision of butterflies.

Molecular Evolution of Arthropod Color Vision Deduced from Multiple Opsin Genes of Jumping Spiders

Phylogenetic analyses of jumping spider opsins revealed a birth and death process of color vision evolution in the arthropod lineage, and sequence comparison between jumping spider Rh3 and the shorter wavelength-sensitive opsins of insects predicted that an opsin of the ancestralArthropod had the lysine residue responsible for UV sensitivity.

Pteropsin: a vertebrate-like non-visual opsin expressed in the honey bee brain.

The lycaenid butterfly Polyommatus icarus uses a duplicated blue opsin to see green

It is demonstrated that the lycaenid Polyommatus icarus uses its duplicate blue opsin in conjunction with its long-wavelength (LW) opsin, LWRh, to see color in the green part of the light spectrum extending up to 560 nm, which suggests that lateral filtering pigments may not always influence color vision in insects.

Beauty in the eye of the beholder: the two blue opsins of lycaenid butterflies and the opsin gene-driven evolution of sexually dimorphic eyes

The butterfly Lycaena rubidus has evolved sexually dimorphic eyes due to changes in the regulation of opsin expression patterns to match the contrasting life histories of males and females, and this novel blue opsin gene duplication may help explain the blueness of blue lycaenid butterflies.

Avian Visual Pigments: Characteristics, Spectral Tuning, and Evolution

In birds, UVS visual pigments have re‐evolved from an ancestral avian VS pigment by using a novel molecular mechanism not seen in other vertebrate classes, which has occurred independently in four of the 14 avian orders examined to date.

Spectral organization of the eye of a butterfly, Papilio

  • K. Arikawa
  • Biology
    Journal of Comparative Physiology A
  • 2003
This review outlines our recent studies on the spectral organization of butterfly compound eyes, with emphasis on the Japanese yellow swallowtail butterfly, Papilio xuthus, which is the most