Butterflies mate through sexual reproduction, and mating begins when the male butterfly detects a female butterfly releasing pheromones at close range. If the female accepts the male, the male attaches to the female's abdomen, injecting a sperm packet into her stomach that she stores until she decides to lay eggs.Know More
During mating, the male and female butterflies may go on a courtship flight that can last for an hour or more. As the eggs pass down the female butterfly's egg-laying tube, the sperm fertilize them. In monarch butterflies, courtship is composed of an aerial stage and a ground phase. The male chases, nudges and eventually takes down the female butterfly during the aerial phase. The sperm packet transfer takes place during the ground phase where copulation occurs. It is thought that the sperm packet also provides the female with energy sources that help her accomplish reproduction and remigration.
Although male butterflies can mate more than once, female butterflies only mate once throughout their lives. An adult female typically lays approximately 100 eggs. Some butterflies lay eggs in groups, but others lay a single egg distributed among many plants. After the larva stage, a butterfly produces a chrysalis during the pupa stage which generally lasts seven to 10 days.Learn more in Butterflies & Moths
Lizards, snakes and toads are a few animals that eat butterflies, according to the TheButterflySite. Frogs eat butterflies as well, and monkeys and rats are two animals in the mammal category that consume butterflies. Humans also eat butterflies as a delicacy in Africa, Southeast Asia and Mexico. Butterflies are consumed by predators as eggs, caterpillars and adults.Full Answer >
Lepidopterist is a term for an individual who studies butterflies professionally. A lepidopterist is interested in butterflies and possibly moths and may explore such interests by constructing collections to studying the insects through molecular biology.Full Answer >
Different butterfly species occupy slightly different niches, but most are forest- or field-dwelling, flying, nectar-feeding insects. Butterflies have long, extensible tongues that they insert into flowers to suck out the nectar. During feeding, butterflies are often covered in pollen, making them effective agents of pollination for plants. Butterflies are eaten by a variety of predators, including birds and reptiles.Full Answer >
Butterflies eat by sipping nectar and other liquids through their proboscis, a tubular appendage that functions like a straw. The larvae of butterflies, called caterpillars, feed voraciously on plant material, especially leaves.Full Answer >