Did You Know?

Worldwide, there are approximately 28,000 species. There are about 725 species in the USA and Canada. About 2,000 species have been found in Mexico. About 80% of all species are in the tropics. The United Kingdom has 58 species of butterfly and 2,000 species of moth.

At night or during bad weather, butterflies will usually hang from the undersides of leaves, or crawl into crevices between rocks or other objects, and sleep.

Moth species outnumber butterfly species by 16-to-1.

Adult butterflies sip nectar from flowers through their tongues, which act like straws. A very few butterflies do not visit flowers, but instead feed on tree sap or rotting organic material.

Queen Alexandra's Birdwing (Ornithoptera alexandrae), with a wing span of 11-1/8 inches (280 mm), is found only in the rain forest of New Guinea. Destruction of its habitat is threatening this beautiful creature with extinction.

The smallest butterfly, the Pygmy Blue (Brephidium exilis), is found in the southern United States. Its wingspan is 1/2 inch (15 mm).

Butterflies communicate mostly through chemical signals. Males produce 'pheromones' to attract females. A few species communicate with sound. For example, the male Cracker Butterfly can produce noises with its wings.

Butterfly wings are covered with scales (that's the meaning of the word 'lepidoptera'). Each scale is a single color, most of which are produced by pigments. The iridescence that's sometimes seen is produced from a reflective microstructure on the surface of the scales.

Arizona is the state with the most butterfly species, with 220.

I just think they're pretty.

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