Certain countries are especially rich in insects which embody in their structure or coloring the various conditions of their surroundings, or the plants on which they live, or other insects. There are insect-leaves, insect-twigs, insect-stones, insect mosses and insect-stars—fireflies. Even a general and casual study of these insects reveals a whole world of miracles. Butterflies, whose folded wings represent a large, dry leaf, with serrated edges, with symmetrical spots, veins and an intricate design, stuck to the tree or whirling in the wind. Beetles which imitate grey moss. Wonderful insects, the bodies of which are exact copies of small green twigs, sometimes with a broad leaf at the end. These latter insects are found for instance, on the Black Sea shore of the Caucasus. In Ceylon there is a large green insect which lives on a certain kind of bus and copies the exact form, colour and dimensions of the leaves of this plant (Phyllium siccifolium).

At a distance of about a yard it is quite impossible to distinguish the insect among the leaves from a genuine leaf. The leaves are almost round in shape, an inch and a half or two inches in diameter, with a pointed end, fairly thick, with veins and serrated edges and with a red peduncle below. And precisely the same veins and serrations are faithfully reproduced on the upper part of the insect. Underneath, where the peduncle begins on the real leaf, is a small red body with thing legs and a head with feelers. It is quite invisible from above. The “leaf” covers it and protects it from curious eyes.

P.D. Ouspensky. A New Model of the Universe.