Considered a sign of good fortune in its native Central and South America, the Callicore butterfly’s lucky numbers are 88 and 89. Emblazoned across each wing, the striking digits help this species to attract mates amidst the flora and fauna.
The exact markings of the 88’89 butterfly depend on the specific subspecies. There are 12 types, with the markings taking a different form, colour, and shape each time. Sadly, the number of Callicores is dwindling – they are often killed for their exotic wings, which are used in the production of tourist souvenirs.
Butterfly wings are covered with thousands of tiny scales made from a substance called chitin. These dusty scales give the insects their striking colours, as well as helping to regulate their body temperature.