Morpho peleides, South America
The Blue Morpho is a member of the Morphidae species and are widespread
in the tropical rainforests of Central and South America as well as in
the West Indies. This neo tropical blue butterfly belongs to the Genus:
Morpho, Family: Morphoidae, Order: Lepidoptera, Class: Insecta and Phylum:
They reside in tropical jungles and can often be found in clearings. Most
of their later life history is still unknown. What is known is that they
normally spend their nights hanging from trees and the underside of leaves.
Microscopic ridges on the backs of their wings fracture and reflect light,
making them appear iridescent, like blue gemstones. When their wings are
folded they show only the bottom of their wings that are camouflaged dull
brown side with "eye spots"
This allows for the morpho to fold inward the bright side of its wings
when it sleeps and show only the side that blends into the environment.
While in flight, males tend to get aggressive if another male comes too
close in proximity. Yet nearby a watering place, two males can sit close
together without conflict. Males are known to group together at night
and have a special location for eating and another place for resting.
Much of a male butterfly's time is spent looking for females. How surprising!