There are approximately 20,000 species of butterflies existing in the world today. Since 1968, the number of new species of butterflies has increased dramatically.
Now that many more areas of the rainforest are accessible to scientists, it makes identifying new species of butterflies much easier. It is likely there are many species that have not yet been discovered and may never be discovered because they are so elusive, live such short lives and will become extinct before they can be found.
The most widely seen butterfly in the world is the Painted Lady butterfly. This species is found in North America, the Caribbean, Asia, Europe, Africa, Madagascar, Thailand, Malaysia and Australia.
The latest species of butterfly to be discovered is the Intricate Satyr butterfly that lives in East Texas, Florida and South Carolina.Learn More
Most moths are nocturnal and prefer to fly around at night. These moths rest in an out-of-the way place during the day. There are some moths that are active during the day; they are known as diurnal moths.Full Answer >
It is nearly impossible to tell if a caterpillar is male or female; most species must be dissected to determine gender. However, the gender of butterflies and moths can be determined by coloring, markings on the wings and other characteristics. For instance, male monarch butterflies have black spots on their wings that females do not have.Full Answer >
The monarch butterfly has bright orange, black and white wings that warn predators away. Any animals that try to feed on this butterfly find out quickly that it is both noxious and toxic.Full Answer >
Antheraea polyphemus is the scientific name of the Polyphemus moth. It's one of the biggest moths known, with a wingspan of between 4 and 5 inches. Like most moths, it flies primarily at night. It's found in the temperate forests of North America.Full Answer >