Costa Rican Butterflies...
Monarchs, Morphos and More!


First time experience, seeing Costa Rican butterflies...

Was out on the southern Nicoya Peninsula, at the Mariposario Butterfly Gardens and Bed & Breakfast - just up the hill, and very close to the waterfalls in Montezuma.

Observing truly exotic species like blue morphos and owl butterflies - two very large, and also very unique, species of lepidoptera - up close and personal...

Was really quite something.

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Another memorable time, and on a little less exotic note - was way up in Boca Tapada...

A Monarch Butterfly Feeding in Boca Tapada
A Monarch Butterfly, on Vacation in Costa Rica?

Observing white-spotted monarch butterflies - a species well known for its vast distance migrations (they're common in Canada, the United States, and Mexico too)...

Seemingly on vacation, just like us. :-)

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And yes - here on this page of the site, fun and interesting facts about various "flutterbies" (always wanted to call them that)...

Please click and read on, to learn more about Costa Rican butterflies!







Blue Morpho Butterfly

Morfo Azul   |   Morpho Peleides

First seeing morphos in the wild - one of the largest species of Costa Rican butterflies - and yes, on the planet too!...

Was simply magical.

Blue Morpho Butterfly
A Brilliant Blue Morpho Butterfly

Two places that immediately come to mind - great chances to observe them in captivity...

Are the La Paz Waterfall Gardens near the Poas Volcano, and the Mariposario Butterfly Gardens, in Montezuma.

In both spots - walking around a large enclosure, inhabited by all sorts of these beautiful flying insects, not only do have the opportunity for some great photos...

But if you're real still (and patient!), morphos will actually land on you.

Interesting to know - it's actually light, and the way it reflects upon thousands of microscopic scales, which give off the butterfly's brilliant royal blue (and sometimes even a metallic green) color.

Of course, it's possible to walk right on by a Blue Morpho - without even a glance. Closing its wings, when predators draw near - the underside is a dull brownish color...

Making it likely for them to go unnoticed.

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Fun Fact: Baby Blue Morphos (caterpillars) - secrete a very unpleasant-smelling liquid, to help keep predators away.





Glasswing Butterfly

Espejitos   |   Greta Oto

True to its name (in Spanish too - espejitos translates to "little mirrors") - though not literally...

Glasswing Butterfly
A Glasswing at the La Paz Waterfall Gardens

Glasswings have segments on their wings - that are completely transparent!

And yes - getting right down to the science...

These "windowed wings" are actually caused by a lacking of scales in the tissue between the veins...

Ones - as is the case near the borders of the wings, would normally reflect light in such a way, to reveal various colors.

Wow, nature is just incredible.

It's fun to imagine a butterfly, with wings completely absent of these light-reflecting scales...

A glasswing, through and see-through. :-)

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Fun Fact: Interesting to know - adult glasswings are toxic! The nectar they feed on is high in alkaloids (largely nitrogen-containing compounds), which males convert to pheromones, to attract females.