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Final position

axisSpreading Butterflies: Step 10. Final position. After the wings are in the desired configuration, position the abdomen and antennae. Never let the abdomen dry in a drooped position. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to correct this after the specimen has dried without re-relaxing it - and even then it may be difficult. I use crossed pins to set the abdomen to be parallel with the vertical and horizontal axis of the board. I carefully set the antennae in a natural 'V' configuration using insect pins. For extra protection, I sometimes position the antennae under the narrow strips before I start the pinning process. Note the position of the forewings in this picture. The museum standard is for the trailing edge of the forewings to be a right angles (90 degrees) with the vertical axis of the butterfly body. The position of the hindwing in relation to the forewing can vary. Some collectors like to set the hindwings low so that more of the wing pattern can be seen. Others like it higher, which is a more natural position for a living butterfly. In any case, to make an attractive symmetrical mount, make sure that the relative position between the hindwing and the forewing is the same on both sides of the butterfly.

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