Saturday, August 21, 2021

Nectar Mimicry at Lewisia cotylodon made visible using multispectral photography I

Today about something new: Nectar Mimicry! This Summer 2021 I took shots of an orange long blooming, perennial flower Cliff maids - Lewisia cotyledon in reflected ultraviolet photography and simulated bee and butterfly vision. And this was when I detected a highly refective ring in visible and especially reflected UV photography. Talking to Prof. Klaus Lunau, whom I know since years, revealed that he has just recently discovered and published about this!

This clearly visible reflecting ring, formed by those shiny petals which is also visible in UV has recently been discovered by Prof. (em) Klaus Lunau of the University of Duesseldorf, Germany and he has published about that in NATURE 2020 here: Lunau, K., Ren, ZX., Fan, XQ. et al. Nectar mimicry: a new phenomenon. Sci Rep 10, 7039 (2020).

All these shots were done at f11 in reflected ultraviolet photography using my "work horse" UV filter, the Baader-U filter, as well as my XBV filters for simulated bee and butterfly vision. Lens was a UV-Nikkor 105mm quartz fluorite lens. Light source was Xenon light from my UV enhanced studio flash.

[click on image to see a larger one]

Human vision:

Reflected UV:

Simulated butterfly vision:

Simulated bee vision:

Quadriptych of human vision, UV, simulated butterfly and bee vision (left to right, top to bottom):

Lewisia has a visible UV pattern, its petal tips are UV bright around 385nm, its center is UV dark, so this and this highl yreflecting ring structure gets quite nicely visible, also in simulated butterfly and bee vision.

I have written more about that flower HERE
Stay tuned, more will follow on that fascinating subject...

More info on this very interesting field may be found on my site