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Rare Animals: Top 10 Rarest Butterflies in the World

Updated on June 21, 2011

Butterflies are one of the most beautiful creatures in the world. Below are some of the rarest, not to mention most beautiful, flighty and colorful butterflies that, fortunately.are still alive and thriving today.

Duke of Burgundy

The duke of Burgundy (Hamearis lucina) is a native of the UK and is fond of clearings and grasslands. The females of the species are the wandering sort while the males are the more territorial. For males, the average wingspan is 1.1–1.2 inches while the females' average 1.2–1.3 inches.


The glasswinged butterfly (Greta oto) is found in Mexico through Panama though some species have been spotted in Venezuela. The males of the species are known to lek (gather together). The translucent wings can grow as much as (tip to tip) 2.4 inches. The "glass-like" appearance of the wings is due to the lack of tissues or scales between the veins.


The name "kaiser-i-hind" literally means "Emperor of India" and this butterfly that is native to India belongs to the swallowtail family. Teinopalpus imperialis is made unique by the wings' green iridiscence.

Mutated Spangle

Belonging to the swallowtail family, the mutated spangle butterfly (Papilio protenor) was previously considered extinct until their rediscovery in India where they are believed to be native species.

Northern Brown Argus

Another native butterfly of Great Britain is the northern brown argus (Aricia artaxerxes). According to studies, the northern brown argus solely feeds on the common rock-rose. Efforts are ongoing to conserve the species.

Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing

Named after Queen Alexandra of the UK in 1907, Queen Alexandra's birdwing (Ornithoptera alexandrae) is the largest in the world with the female's wingspan reaching a length of 12.2 inches. They are considered one of the strongest flyers in the butterfly world.

Palos Verdes Blue

The Palos Verdes blue (Glaucopsyche lygdamus palosverdesensis) is considered by many as the rarest butterfly in the world and, unfortunately, also an endangered species. They are limitedly distributed to the Palos Verdes Peninsula in California are relatively small with an average wingspan of only 0.97 to 1.17 inches.

Pearl-Bordered Fritillary

Although the pearl-bordered fritillary (Boloria euphrosyne) occurs in various parts of Europe, its number has rapidly declined through the years making it rare and slightly threatened. The species has an average wingspan of 1.4 to 1.7 inches and is made unique by the markings on its wings that look like pearls.


Found in the Philippines, Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra the Saturn butterfly (Zeuxidia amethystus) has an average wingspan of 3.9 60 4.3 inches. The males of the species has a deeper, stronger color than their female counterparts. The butterfly prefers the meat of rotting fruits.

Silvery Meadow Blue

The silvery meadow blue butterfly (Polyommatus florience) has been spotted in Pakistan, Afghanistan and more recently in Himachal Pradesh, India. The species are believed to make meadows and clearings its habitat.


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      Owen 6 months ago

      thank you for writing this it was very intresting

    • profile image

      rachel 12 months ago

      thank you

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      rachel 12 months ago

      yes i am a young blogger and editor

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      rachel 12 months ago

      On the last one i think that you forgot a "in" after clearings and before its.

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      rachel 12 months ago

      and, i think you put the number 60 instead of to in the same paragraph

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      rachel 12 months ago

      no offence, but you forgot a period after the word Sumatra in the paragraph about the Saturn butterfly

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      rachel 12 months ago

      incredible and beautiful butterflies!

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      Carl 2 years ago

      Hamearis lucina is not rare. It is not even endangered and widely distributed in most of Europe... didn't bother to read the rest.

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      yoopa 2 years ago

      Good site

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      Davison 3 years ago

      I love butterflies

    • profile image

      hey hey 3 years ago

      i is awesome people should come to this site more

    • profile image

      Blake 3 years ago


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      A person 4 years ago

      The glass winged butterfly is really cool. Too bad it is rare.

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      lilydoda 4 years ago

      I don't see what one is most rearest of all.

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      brooke 5 years ago

      This helped me im only 10 years old and i got an A+ because of this I love BUTTERFLIES!!!!

    • profile image

      Jaslin 5 years ago


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      rayann 6 years ago


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      sarang mhatre 6 years ago

      its a great site for rare wildlife knowledge