May 13, 2012

The Golden Section in Nature: Animals


There are many examples of the Golden Section or Divine Proportion in nature.

Below are just a few:

The eye, fins and tail all fall at golden sections of the length of a dolphin’s body. The dimensions of the dorsal fin are golden sections (yellow and green). The thickness of the dolphin’s tail section corresponds to same golden section of the line from head to tail.

Phi, golden ratio or Divine proportions in a Dolphin

The eye-like markings of this moth fall at golden sections of the lines that mark its width and length.   

Phi, golden ratio or Divine proportions in a Moth

The spiral growth of sea shells provide a simple, but beautiful, example.

Phi, golden ratio or Divine proportions in a Sea Shell

Every key body feature of the angel fish falls at golden sections of its width and length. The nose, tail section, and centers of the fins of the angel fish fall at first (blue) golden sections. The second golden section (yellow) defines the indents on the dorsal and tail finds as well as the top of the body. The green section defines the marking around the eye and the magenta section defines the eye.

Phi, golden ratio or Divine proportions in an Angel Fish

The eyes, beak, wing and key body markings of the penguin all fall at golden sections of its height.

Phi, golden ratio or Divine droportions in a Penguin

All the key facial features of the tiger fall at golden sections of the lines defining the length and width of its face.

Phi, golden ratio or Divine proportions in a tiger's face

The body sections of an ant are defined by the golden sections of its length. Its leg sections are also golden sections of its length. 

Phi, golden ratio or Divine Proportions in the body sections of an ant - side viewPhi, golden ratio or Divine roportions in the body sections an ant - top view
The facial features of a koala bear show golden ratio proportions in the dimensions and positions of the eyes, nose and mouth in relation to the dimensions of the face.

Koala bear golden ratio

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Ramchandra Amnekar August 3, 2012 at 9:46 am

Nature is a creative researcher


Psychology student July 10, 2013 at 8:32 pm

Yes, very creative, and when you said nature, surely you mean an intelligent designer? Nature is not alive is it?

I like the term creative researcher though :)


Sarita January 29, 2014 at 5:35 am

If nature is not alive then we are all dead.


Gary Meisner January 29, 2014 at 1:12 pm

This logic is faulty, as not everything in nature is alive. Hydrogen, carbon and oxygen and other elements on the periodic table are not alive, nor are many things composed of them, e.g., diamonds, rocks, various inorganic compounds, etc. Only living organisms are alive, so if the building blocks of life are not in themselves alive, “creative” or intelligent, it still leaves us with the question of how life originated from them.


Rajesh K Mediratta August 6, 2012 at 1:40 pm

Would like to know about your observations on phi in animals.


Peter September 25, 2012 at 9:11 pm

Okay, I have been looking into this for a few days now, and I have some issues. I want to believe this, but it looks like you are choosing the points within animals and plants in an arbitrary way. For example, with the penguin, why are those particular points chosen? Is it because they match with the ratio? Also, the human, the point between the legs, and then the point in the midsection, I am not sure what significance these points have from a visual standpoint that they would be chosen, other than the fact that they correlate to the golden ratio.

Am I missing something? I was initially excited about this, but I am starting to get sceptical.


jasmine October 9, 2012 at 2:18 pm

i agree


Faatui November 29, 2012 at 12:15 pm

It doesn’t matter what points he chooses…what matters is that it is there. Nature is extremely redundant, but hides it well.


jasmine October 9, 2012 at 2:15 pm

I dont get it… you just picked specific points of the animal and specific animals why cant you just choose a bunch of flowers and see what they get? if you may post it to me please, thanks for reading this its very appreciated from everyone hope you have a nice day!


AISWARYA October 28, 2012 at 12:14 am



Gary Meisner October 29, 2012 at 10:18 pm

See for some ideas on phi topics. See also for applications of the golden ratio.


Fraser November 15, 2012 at 4:59 pm

Hi Gary,
Would just like to express my appreciation for this site and your kind responses to the questions. I am an artist and have been focusing on my composition and this site has really helped me get a grasp on multiple aspects at once.
The diagrams , breakdown and comments section are top notch.
I am inspired to find other parallels to this system such as cooking, or martial arts(?)


Michele November 30, 2012 at 6:23 am

Can you speak to how this relates to music?

Thank you,

BTW, I am hearing music…and no I don’t have any mental health issues.


Gary Meisner December 1, 2012 at 12:49 am

Certainly. See the Music page.


Elizabeth Marvel May 2, 2013 at 9:42 am

your website helped me alot. it had alot of info


Kristie October 27, 2013 at 10:21 pm

Can I just remind people that koalas aren’t bears, they’re marsupials!


tyit January 14, 2014 at 11:37 am

Yes, very creative, and when you said nature, surely you mean an intelligent designer? Nature is not alive is it?


Poet March 19, 2014 at 10:06 am

While writing a poem about a boiled egg, I wondered if a boiled egg can be be marked off into golden segments.


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