Adult movie camelions
In addition, we show that a deeper population of iridophores with larger crystals reflects a substantial proportion of sunlight especially in the near-infrared range.
The organization of iridophores into two superposed layers constitutes an evolutionary novelty for chameleons, which allows some species to combine efficient camouflage with spectacular display, while potentially providing passive thermal protection.
We study the panther chameleon (Furcifer pardalis), a lizard from Madagascar, capable of dynamic colour change.
Our Raman spectroscopy analyses indicate the presence of two types of dark chromatophores containing respectively melanin and an unidentified dark-blue pigment (Supplementary Fig. Although panther chameleons of both sexes and all ages can strongly modulate the brightness of the skin through dispersion of these pigments (for example, in response to stress), adult males are additionally characterized both by exceptionally large intraspecific colour variation (with various combinations of white, red, green and blue skin) among geographic locales within Madagascar and their ability to rapidly change colour (hue).
Many chameleons, and panther chameleons in particular, have the remarkable ability to exhibit complex and rapid colour changes during social interactions such as male contests or courtship.
Ever since their description by Aristotle, chameleons have populated myths and legends because of a number of features such as a long projectile tongue, independently movable eyes, zygodactylous feet, a very slow pace and the striking capacity of some species to rapidly shift from one vivid colour to another, but these so-called physiological colour changes are generally mediated by modifications of skin brightness (that is, diffuse and/or specular reflectivity) through dispersion/aggregation of pigment-containing organelles, especially melanosomes, within dermal chromatophores.