Blue morpho butterflies are species of butterflies found in the Latin and Central American tropical rain forests. Read on to know some amazing and interesting facts about the blue morpho butterfly.

Facts About The Blue Morpho Butterfly

Blue morpho butterflies are butterfly species found in the tropical rainforests of South and Central America in countries including Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica and Venezuela. The sight of this butterfly flying is amazing, thanks to its bright blue wings which reflect light, and a contrasting underside which is dull brown in colour. Their blue coloured wings are actually an illusion created by the microscopic scales on top which reflects the light. These bright blue wings also have brown edges with small dots. What makes their wings more interesting is the presence of these reflective scales which help them escape attacks of predators. These blue morpho butterflies, which undergo a lot of transformation during the varied stages of their life cycle, are reddish brown in colour at birth. As in the case of all butterflies, they turn pupa and are born again after several weeks. Having wings ranging from 5 to 8 inches, they are one of the largest butterflies in the world. Read on to know more about the amazing and interesting facts about the blue morpho butterfly.
Amazing And Interesting Facts About The Blue Morpho Butterfly
  • One of the world’s largest butterflies, the blue morpho butterflies have wings which are 5 to 8 inches width.
  • The adult blue morpho butterflies are mostly seen in forest floors and streams, with folded wings.
  • The underside of their wings is brownish in colour and is visible only when these butterflies take rest or when they fold up their wings. It is this dull colour which helps them hide from their predators by allowing them to mix well with their surroundings.
  • A morpho butterfly’s wings’ dull brown underside has eye spots which are a defence mechanism to keep predators, including insects and birds, at bay.
  • As caterpillars, they are cannibals and the hairs of these caterpillars are quite irritating for the humans and even for the birds who try to eat them.
  • Morpho butterflies cannot chew; instead they drink the fluids from their food.
  • These butterflies have some sensors in their legs which help them taste their food and their antennae help them smell and feel the air while, at the same time, acting as legs also.
  • The male butterflies tend to have brighter wings as compared to their female counterparts. The female blue morpho butterflies have dull blue wings, with small white spots and brown edges.
  • Their contrasting blue wings on the top and the dull brown underside gives an impression that it is appearing and disappearing. This is one of the mechanisms they use to distract their attackers.
  • The male blue morpho butterflies are seen living in the ground area, mostly in shrubs.
  • Female blue morpho butterflies have dull blue coloured wings with white spots and a brownish edge.
  • Though it chews leaves of different varieties in the caterpillar form, a morpho butterfly mostly feeds on the plants belonging to the pea family.
  • These blue morpho butterflies, using their long proboscis, suck juices from rotten fruits, wet mud, tree sap, fungi and decomposing animals.
  • These butterflies prefer flying over thick jungles, among the canopies. They are most active under bright sunlight.
  • The lifespan of blue morpho butterfly is only 115 days, of which majority time is spent eating and reproducing. It follows different diets in various stages in its lifespan.
  • According to experts, blue morpho butterflies have almost become endangered, mostly due to loss of habitat owing to deforestation and other human interferences.
  • Do remember not to disturb these blue morpho butterflies. If disturbed, they generate a stinking fluid that can be awful enough to ruin your day.
  • These butterflies fly through varied layers of the forest while hunting for a mate.
  • Unlike other butterflies, morpho butterflies do not find nectar to be a preferable food.
  • The predators of blue morpho butterfly are flycatchers and jacamars.
  • Pilots flying over rainforests often spot these blue butterflies above treetops.
  • The natives of rainforests affiliate many superstitions with these butterflies. They are either seen as evil spirits or as wish granters.
  • The male blue morpho butterflies are quite territorial and use their blue wings to frighten other males.
  • Their scientific name, Morpho Menelus was given in the year 1758 by Carl Linnaeus to honour Menelaus, the king of ancient Sparta who is also a mythological figure in Greek mythology.

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