Name This Insect

Bizarre insect

(Charles Platt is a guest blogger)  No doubt some BB reader can name this far-fetched creature, which I found pinned to some styrofoam in a display case at the Butterfly Museum in Boca Raton, Florida. Picture yourself camping somewhere in the wilderness and seeing one of these six-inch weirdos zooming into your tent. I have to wonder why such a thing should evolve the way it did, especially with that weird extra pair of wings, like the canard on one of Burt Rutan’s composite airplanes.

The museum is a fun place to visit, allowing you to walk through giant cages full of freshly hatched butterflies. Watching people trying to photograph them is highly entertaining, since butterflies move chaotically while flying and then, as soon as they land, most of them close their wings.

It was much easier to take pictures of the insects that were dead.

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