Blue Morpho Butterfly Exhibit - A Photo Gallery

The Blue Morpho Butterfly - Wings Up Close

If you look closely, you can see through the wings to the other side of this beautiful butterfly.  You can actually see the "eye spots", showing from the other side of the wing.  I have not seen this quite like that before I saw this one.
If you look closely, you can see through the wings to the other side of this beautiful butterfly. You can actually see the "eye spots", showing from the other side of the wing. I have not seen this quite like that before I saw this one. | Source

Blue Morpho Butterfly on Colorful Leaf

Blue morpho butterfly resting on a colorful leaf.
Blue morpho butterfly resting on a colorful leaf. | Source

Information on the Blue Morpho Butterfly

Blue Morpho butterflies have been capturing the attention of people for a very long time. The metallic blue sheen is hard to ignore. You can see it in varying intensity of blues, including turquoise and aqua, etc. Some older butterflies have a more faded intensity, but they are still amazingly beautiful.

There were some Amazon tribes that used to believe that these butterflies were bits of the sky that had fallen to earth. When you look closer at the colors shown on their wings, you can see why they would say this.

What Accounts for the Blue Color in the Wings?

Most butterflies get their coloring to the pigments contained within the scales on their wings. They lay on top of each other, almost like shingles on a roof. With the blue morpho butterfly, it is different. The color you see is achieved by reflected light. In this case, the scales covering the wings have crevices and bumps that act as prisms. This refracts the the sunlight and gives off the electric blue sheen that you see.

Blue Showing Through - Blue Morpho Butterfly

With a little bit clipped off the wing of this blue morpho, you can see both the blue and the brown sides that they sometimes show.  You can see the pink Chenille flower in the background.
With a little bit clipped off the wing of this blue morpho, you can see both the blue and the brown sides that they sometimes show. You can see the pink Chenille flower in the background. | Source

Blue Morpho on Tree Trunk

This beautiful blue morpho is taking a rest on the trunk of a tree.
This beautiful blue morpho is taking a rest on the trunk of a tree. | Source
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Gorgeous blue morpho butterfly, with the light reflecting beautifully off of his wings, in the sunshine.
Gorgeous blue morpho butterfly, with the light reflecting beautifully off of his wings, in the sunshine.
Gorgeous blue morpho butterfly, with the light reflecting beautifully off of his wings, in the sunshine. | Source
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Blue Morpho Butterflies - What is their Defense?

One of the defenses of the blue morpho butterfly is built right back into the bright blue color on the wings. For instance, if a predator comes along to try to eat the butterfly, he needs but open and close his wings a few times, and the brightness of the blue causes the predator to be startled enough to think twice about what is going on. This most often gives the butterfly enough time to achieve a quick get away! Sometimes, the extra few seconds is all it needs, and then the blue morpho can live to see another day perhaps.

For some other predators, the spots on the wings that look like eyes, are a kind of built in mechanism against predators. That and the fact the colors on the one side of the wings are a great camouflage in themselves.

You can see different varieties of blue morpho butterflies. Not all look exactly the same as you see on this page, as there is some variation. Their patterns and coloring help them to blend in with the light and shadows naturally found in a tropical rainforest setting.

Blue Morpho Butterflies with Tattered Wings

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This poor morpho's wings have been through quite a bit, but he is still beautiful.  Notice the blue showing through on the one broken part of the wing.  These blue morpho butterlies, while they seem so fragile, can do alright sometimes even with broken wings.  Life is still pretty fragile for them.  Part of this one butterflies defense mechanism is gone, if his blue is showingBlue Morpho on a colorful leaf, and with some worn out looking wings.  He is still beautiful though.
This poor morpho's wings have been through quite a bit, but he is still beautiful.  Notice the blue showing through on the one broken part of the wing.
This poor morpho's wings have been through quite a bit, but he is still beautiful. Notice the blue showing through on the one broken part of the wing. | Source
These blue morpho butterlies, while they seem so fragile, can do alright sometimes even with broken wings.  Life is still pretty fragile for them.  Part of this one butterflies defense mechanism is gone, if his blue is showing
These blue morpho butterlies, while they seem so fragile, can do alright sometimes even with broken wings. Life is still pretty fragile for them. Part of this one butterflies defense mechanism is gone, if his blue is showing | Source
Blue Morpho on a colorful leaf, and with some worn out looking wings.  He is still beautiful though.
Blue Morpho on a colorful leaf, and with some worn out looking wings. He is still beautiful though. | Source

Possible Color Variations on Blue Morpho Butterflies

The female blue morpho butterflies can be covered in different colors of brown, yellow and orange, as well as the blue colors most often associated with them. Males are attracted to the different colors of the females, of course.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
This blue morpho is in close proximity to other butterflies, and they don't seem to mind it.  I loved seeing this and had to snap a photo.This blue morpho is resting on someone's arm.  They happened to be wearing something almost the same color, which is a good tip to remember if you want them land on you!
This blue morpho is in close proximity to other butterflies, and they don't seem to mind it.  I loved seeing this and had to snap a photo.
This blue morpho is in close proximity to other butterflies, and they don't seem to mind it. I loved seeing this and had to snap a photo. | Source
This blue morpho is resting on someone's arm.  They happened to be wearing something almost the same color, which is a good tip to remember if you want them land on you!
This blue morpho is resting on someone's arm. They happened to be wearing something almost the same color, which is a good tip to remember if you want them land on you! | Source

What Do Blue Morpho Butterflies like to eat?

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Blue Morpho utterflies seem to like this fruit mixture, laid out in a long tray for them, kind of like a trough.  Notice the one butterfly in flight. While this looks very gross to us, this decomposing fruit mixture looks like a great feast to the blue morpho buttterfly!  I am not sure exactly what was put into it.
Blue Morpho utterflies seem to like this fruit mixture, laid out in a long tray for them, kind of like a trough.  Notice the one butterfly in flight.
Blue Morpho utterflies seem to like this fruit mixture, laid out in a long tray for them, kind of like a trough. Notice the one butterfly in flight. | Source
While this looks very gross to us, this decomposing fruit mixture looks like a great feast to the blue morpho buttterfly!  I am not sure exactly what was put into it.
While this looks very gross to us, this decomposing fruit mixture looks like a great feast to the blue morpho buttterfly! I am not sure exactly what was put into it. | Source

The Diet of Blue Morpho Butterflies

Blue morpho butterflies likes different food at the different stages of its life. For instance, when a caterpillar, he eats the leaves of different plants. They do prefer the pea family however, to other leaves.

As a butterfly, the blue morpho uses its proboscis like other butterflies, but doesn't drink the nectar from flowers. It uses its proboscis to suck up different fluids like tree sap, rotting fruit, the liquids from decomposing animals, as well as wet mud.

The most creative display I have seen to date for blue morpho butterflies, was several bananas hanging in a circular fashion from a display. The peels were in place, but with slits cut in them or portions of the peel cut away. In the hot and humid environment they are in, causes them to begin to smell sweet and attracts the butterflies. I have also seen bananas or plantains cut in half an laid out for the butterflies. This mimics the fruit decomposing on the bottom of the tropical rain forest floor.

Blue Morpho Butterfly on Leaves

With wings wide open, this blue morpho butterfly is taking a rest from all of his activities.
With wings wide open, this blue morpho butterfly is taking a rest from all of his activities. | Source

Blue Morpho Butterfly Exhibits

I have been to a few of these blue morpho butterfly exhibits, and I feel so fortunate for that. The place I have seen them the most, is in March at the Sophia M. Sachs Butterfly House in Chesterfield Missouri. If you are ever in the St. Louis area, in any moths but January, and if you like butterflies at all, this is a must see.

This particular exhibit in March is simply incredible. They have blue morphos that will take your breath away! They have a little quiz and fun things to do for the kids as well. If you pass the quiz, you get a little gift, and a discount in the neat gift shop there. You will learn a lot of things, like that that the blue morpho butterfly smells like vanilla!

Blue Morpho Butterfly on Purple Flowers

This is near the water, and the turquoise blue morpho is resting on some pretty purple flowers.  I just love the color combination.
This is near the water, and the turquoise blue morpho is resting on some pretty purple flowers. I just love the color combination. | Source

How To Get Blue Morpho Butterflies to Land on You

The idea of having a blue morpho butterfly alight on you, may sound strange to some people. However, it is not so strange to many of the people that come to butterfly exhibits. In fact, some will stand in place a long time in hopes that some might land on them. There are very explicit rules in place, to not touch the butterflies. However, this doesn't mean the butterflies can't touch you. This doesn't usually result in loss of their pigmented scales that can be brushed off by touching the wings.

So here is the best tip I have seen. Wear the same color of the butterfly, and in this case it is blue, or turquoise, or even some aqua green colors. The colors usually found in oceans works. They will be very attracted to you, if you do so. On the other hand, children that get scared of butterflies all around them, should maybe not wear that color.

Blue Morpho Butterflies on Various Leaves

Click thumbnail to view full-size
A different angle of the blue morpho butterfly.  He seemed to be looking straight at me!  This is a little more intimidating of a view.  Amazing sparkling blue color on these wings.  Blue morpho butterfly resting on a leaf. Two blue morpho butterflies, seeming to communicate on leaves.  The Blue Morpho isn't really interested in eating these, he seems to be just resting for a bit.
A different angle of the blue morpho butterfly.  He seemed to be looking straight at me!  This is a little more intimidating of a view.
A different angle of the blue morpho butterfly. He seemed to be looking straight at me! This is a little more intimidating of a view. | Source
Amazing sparkling blue color on these wings.  Blue morpho butterfly resting on a leaf.
Amazing sparkling blue color on these wings. Blue morpho butterfly resting on a leaf. | Source
Two blue morpho butterflies, seeming to communicate on leaves.
Two blue morpho butterflies, seeming to communicate on leaves. | Source
The Blue Morpho isn't really interested in eating these, he seems to be just resting for a bit.
The Blue Morpho isn't really interested in eating these, he seems to be just resting for a bit. | Source

Blue Morpho Butterfly on Red Flower

This blue morpho appears to be after nectar like many other butteflies.  Upon a closer look, it appears his proboscis may be extended, so its hard to say what he is doing exactly.  Normally, they go for fruit, animals, sap and mud.
This blue morpho appears to be after nectar like many other butteflies. Upon a closer look, it appears his proboscis may be extended, so its hard to say what he is doing exactly. Normally, they go for fruit, animals, sap and mud. | Source

Blue Morpho Butterfly Poll

Have you ever seen a Blue Morpho Butterfly in person?

  • Yes I have seen them before.
  • No, but I would like to!
  • No, and I don't really care to.
  • I have been to butterfly exhibits, but I don't remember.
  • Some other answer.
See results without voting

© 2014 Paula

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Comments 4 comments

The Examiner-1 profile image

The Examiner-1 2 years ago

This was awesome oceansunsets! I have never seen a Blue Morpho before - at least I do not remember. It has been many years since I have watched butterflies. I loved this article. It was great, especially the see-through wings and the way that they get their color. This was definitely a thumbs up. Plus I shared and Pinned it.

Kevin


oceansnsunsets profile image

oceansnsunsets 2 years ago from The Midwest, USA Author

Hello Kevin, I am so glad you could see them here then! It makes me so glad you liked the article and the pictures I took. It is a joy for me because I love butterflies so much. Thank you for the visit, the read, the comment, vote and pin! I really appreciate it.


mbgphoto profile image

mbgphoto 2 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

Blue Morpho's are such beautiful butterflies. At The Butterfly House near St. Louis every March is Morpho Mania month and you will find thousands of Blue Morpho Butterflies in their conservatory. A truly amazing sight.


oceansnsunsets profile image

oceansnsunsets 2 years ago from The Midwest, USA Author

Hello Mgbphoto, I agree with you, I think they are so beautiful! I have been to the March Morpho Mania before, and it was so amazing to me. It truly was an amazing sight to see. The beauty of the blue on their wings is incredible. Thank you for your comment.

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