Photographer Mark Cowan was travelling through the Amazon studying reptile and amphibian diversity when he stumbled upon an unusual sight… A caiman wearing a crown of butterflies!
But that’s not the unusual part. Actually, this phenomenon where butterflies perch on reptiles and drink their tears full of a much-needed mineral for survival – salt, has been documented before. The unusual thing about this photo is how the butterflies organize themselves into three groups of different species. Pretty cool, huh?
This photo was a finalist for the 2016 Royal Society Publishing photography competition and received special commendation. You can find the other finalists here.