What's This?
Colorful Creatures

Why did colorful organisms evolve? Discover some of the amazing ways that animals use color to help them survive.

green mossy area

Look closely at this mystery photo.
Can you guess what it is?


a forest viewed from above


tiny plants floating on a pond


a lizard hiding among vines on a tree


an insect hiding among moss and lichen

Nope. Try again!
You got it!

ANSWER: an insect hiding among moss and lichen

Explore the photo gallery below to see how some animals use color for everything from hiding to hunting to finding mates.

Image Credits:

background pattern gradient and snakeskin texture from Vecteezy.com; katydid, © Thomas Marent/Minden Pictures; owl moth, © Rolf Nussbaumer Photography/Alamy; scorpion fish, © Jake Timms/Alamy; snipe, © Richard Tadman/Alamy; Prosoplecta, courtesy of Beccaloni GW/CC BY-NC-SA 4.0; orchid mantis, courtesy of Luc Viatour/https://Lucnix.be/CC BY-SA 3.0; fan-throated lizard, © Shutterstock; fighting fish, © Shutterstock; red-collared lorikeet, courtesy of JJ Harrison/CC BY-SA 4.0; red-breast Jezebel butterflies, © H. Lansdown/Alamy; mandrill, © Shutterstock; peacock jumping spider, © Biosphoto/Alamy.