Butterflies LIVE!

Please note: We will not have our Butterflies LIVE! exhibit in 2024 and 2025 while we expand the Conservatory to include a permanent butterfly house. Learn more about the Garden’s expansion project.

Meet the Butterflies

Identify the butterflies you’ve seen at Butterflies LIVE! Learn the scientific, common name and country of origin. Experience the wonderful world of butterflies with the help of Butterflies LIVE!

Common Morpho

Morpho peleides

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico to Colombia

Wingspan: 5-8 in. (12.7 – 20.3 cm.)

Fast Fact: Common morphos are attracted to fermenting fruits.

White Morpho

Morpho polyphemus

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico to Central America

Wingspan: 4-4.75 in. (10-12 cm.)

Fast Fact: Adult white morphos prefer to feed on rotting fruits or sap from trees.

Whitened Bluewing

Myscelia cyaniris

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico, parts of Central and South America

Wingspan: 1.3-1.4 in. (3.3-3.6 cm.)

 Fast Fact: The underside of the whitened bluewing is silvery-gray, allowing it to blend in on bark and branches.

Mexican Bluewing

Myscelia ethusa

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico, Central America, Colombia

Wingspan: 2.5-3.0 in. (6.4-7.6 cm.)

Fast Fact: Young caterpillars attach
dung pellets and silk to a leaf vein to create a resting perch.

Great Mormon

Papilio memnon

Family: Papilionidae

Range: Southeast Asia

Wingspan: 4.6-6.0 in. (11.7-15 cm.)

Fast Fact: Male great Mormons never have tails, while females may or may not have tails.

Learn More About Sexually Dimorphic Butterflies

Banded Peacock

Papilio palinurus

Family: Papilionidae

Range: Southeast Asia

Wingspan: 3-4 in. (8-10 cm.)

Fast Fact: Several Asian butterflies are green. The banded peacock can be recognized by its finer shape and curves of the wings.

Scarlet Mormon

Papilio rumanzovia

Family: Papilionidae

Range: Indonesia, The Philippines

Wingspan: 5.5 in. (14 cm.)

Fast Fact: Females are polymorphic, meaning there is variation in the way they look.

Learn More About Sexually Dimorphic Butterflies

Pink Cattle Heart

Parides iphidamas

Family: Papilionidae

Range: Southeastern Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Peru

Wingspan: 3.9 in. (10 cm.)

Fast Fact: The pink cattle heart butterflies have wings dominated with red and yellow-green areas.

Giant Owl

Caligo memnon

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico to Amazon Rainforest

Wingspan: 4.5-5 in. (11.4-13 cm.)

Fast Fact: The giant owl can be recognized by the large patch of pale orange-yellow covering most of its forewings.

Forest Blue Morph

Caligo eurilochus

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico, Central and South America

Wingspan: 4-5 in. (10-13.5 cm.)

Fast Fact: Because of their large size and their tendency to fly at night, these butterflies are often mistaken for bats.

Brown Owl

Caligo oileus

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico to Northern South America

Wingspan: 4.5-5.1 in. (11.4-13 cm.)

Fast Fact: The brown owl inhabits cloud forest habitats at altitudes between 600 and 1,600 meters.

Leopard Lacewing

Cethosia cyane

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: India to southern China and Indochina

Wingspan: 4 in. (10 cm.)

Fast Fact: The leopard lacewing can be found in lowland and upland rainforest habitats.

Learn more About Sexually Dimorphic Butterflies


Dryas iulia

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: South and Central America

Wingspan: 3-3.25 in. (7.5-9.5 cm.)

Fast Fact: This species exhibits sexual dimorphism, which is the term for males and females having different patterns or sizes.

Learn more About Sexually Dimorphic Butterflies

Tailed Jay

Graphium agamemnon

Family: Papilionidae

Range: India, Sri Lanka through Southeast Asia, and Australia

Wingspan: 3.2-3.9 in. (8-10 cm.)

Fast Fact: The green spots on the wings of the tailed jay make it difficult to locate in the dappled sunlight of the rainforest.

Gray Cracker

Hamadryas feronia

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Texas to Argentina, southern Brazil, Paraguay

Wingspan: 2.9-3.3 in. (7.3-8.3 cm.)

Fast Fact: Gray crackers blend into their surroundings in the tropical dry forest, where bark is often silvery-grey or brown.

Blue and White Longwing

Heliconius cydno

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Southern Mexico to western Ecuador

Wingspan: 2.9-3.3 in. (7.3-8.3 cm.)

Fast Fact: Blue and white longwings are fast fliers.

Golden Helicon

Heliconius hecale

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Central America to Amazon

Wingspan: 2.8-3.5 in. (7-9 cm.)

Fast Fact: The larvae of the longwings, also known as the heliconids, feed on members of the passion flower family.


Heliconius melpomene

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Central and South America

Wingspan: 1.4-1.5 in. (3.6-3.8 cm.)

Fast Fact: The postman tends to avoid direct sunlight. There are many morphs.




Black Swallowtail

Papilio polyxenes

Family: Papilionidae

Range: Southern Canada, North America, South America

Wingspan: 3.5-4.5 in. (9-11.5 cm.)

Fast Fact: The black swallowtail is also called the anise swallowtail, since its larval hosts include umbellifers like parsley, anise, and dill.

Black and Tan Page

Siproeta epaphus 

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Tropical rainforests in Central and South America

Wingspan: 2.3-3 in. (7-7.5 cm.)

Fast Fact: Females are similar to males, but larger.


Zebra Mosaic

Colobura dirce

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Mexico to Central and South America

Wingspan: 2.5-2.75 in. (6-7 cm.)

Fast Fact: The zebra mosaic eats rotting bananas and other fruits, and sometimes even visits wet laundry. They rarely feed on nectar from flowers.


Danaus plexippus

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: North America, South America, Australia

Wingspan: 3.25-4.75 in. (8-11 cm.)

Fast Fact: Monarchs are the state insect or state butterfly of Alabama, Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, Texas, Vermont and West Virginia. They were named after King William of Orange.

Autumn Leaf

Doleschallia bisaltide

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Southeast Asia, Australia

Wingspan: 2.5-2.8 in. (6-7 cm.)

Fast Fact: The autumn leaf forms a leaf-like shape when it closes its wings, helping it blend into its surroundings.

Great Orange Tip

Hebomoia glaucippe

Family: Pieridae

Range: India to Malaysia, China and Japan

Wingspan: 2.8-4.0 in. (7.0-10.0 cm.)

Fast Fact: The great orange tip is the largest species of the Pieridae family in Asia.

Doris Longwing

Heliconius doris

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Central to South America

Wingspan: 3.3-3.5 in. (8-9 cm.)

Fast Fact: The doris longwing has three color forms. The forewing colors remain the same in all three forms, while the hindwings can be orange, blue, or green.

Grecian Shoemaker

Catonephele numilia

Family: Nymphalidae

Range: Central to South America

Wingspan: 2.5-3 in. (6.5-8 cm.)

Fast Fact: The Grecian shoemaker butterfly is sexually dimorphic, meaning that the male and the female butterflies look different from one another. While both butterflies look the same with wings closed, the male has bright orange spots as shown above. The females are black with a light yellow band. These butterflies, sometimes called stoplight Catone, like to enjoy rotting fruit!

See the Top 10 Tips for Visiting Butterflies LIVE! with Kids

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