A rare half hermaphrodite butterfly, meaning the butterfly had half male and half female traits, was spotted recently. The discovery though exotic, is also quite unusual and was made at a Butterfly exhibit held at Drexel University in Philadelphia.
Mr. Chris Jhonson, a retired chemical engineer from Swarthmore was quite shocked at the sight of this unusual Butterfly, which is half male and half female. Mr. Jhonson was a volunteer at the exhibit when he came across the unusual and rare butterfly.
When he was emptying the pupae chamber, he spotted a butterfly which initially felt different to him. There were noticeable differences amongst the sizes of the two wings on the left and right side of the butterfly. The right wings were quite similar to that of the female species i.e. they were large and were also colored normally with brown and yellow with white spots. While on the other hand, the left wings were comparatively smaller and had a dark outlook with noticeable shades of blue, green and purple.
He was quite dumbfounded and was also unaware that such a butterfly could exist, so he along with his supervisor quickly contacted the Entomology Collection Manager and the butterfly to him.
Upon inspection by experts, it was later revealed that the butterfly is a common Archduke Butterfly and was suffering from a rare genetic condition named gynandromorphy, in which both the male and female traits appear. The butterfly has both male and female reproductive organs hence the term hermaphrodite.
This condition is also found commonly in birds. The butterfly would be on display from 17th January to 16th February at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University.