As one drinks with a straw, a butterfly drinks through its proboscis. A butterfly does not have an apparent, exterior mouth. It can’t chew its food, hence needs to drink its food.
A caterpillar includes a visible, exterior mouth and additionally it chews on its food – the leaves. However, once the caterpillar retreats into its cocoon and emerges as a butterfly with its flexible straw-like proboscis – an extended, tubular extension. When it’s not feeding, the proboscis is coiled inward.
Flowers position their pollen at their neck behind the flower petals. A butterfly looking for nectar first reaches the flower and tastes the nectar. It changes around and stretches proboscis into the flower’s nectary. Polen sticks to the butterfly. Once the same butterfly visits another flower, pollination happens.
Flower’s Passageway For Nectar
Seeing stars with short proboscises chose plants with short passageways for nectaries’, for example lantana, phlox and verbena flowers. Whereas, skippers and swallowtail seeing stars stretch their extended proboscises lower the extended tubes of Beardtongue flowers to sip nectar. (Even hummingbirds employing their extended beaks such as the nectar of people flowers).
Generally, butterflies prefer plants that have ample flowers clustered together. To start with, this guarantees a ‘splash’ of color entices the butterfly in. Also clustered flowers are more likely to assure a butterfly of a good fill of nectar.
A butterfly will prefer flowers with petals large enough to offer a landing platform. That way they won’d have to flap their wings like hummingbirds to drink the nectar. In turn, this helps the flowers in pollination.
Numerous flowers species are specifically designed to attract butterflies. The nectar of individuals flowers reaches the foot of tubes that are too small for other bugs to reach.
Some butterflies are attracted by flowers of specific colors and not other colors. The Silver Spotted Skipper flowers shun yellow flowers but like all other colors. In contrast the Sulphur Butterfly favors yellow flowers.
24, 000 or more species of butterflies exist on our planet. Each species has its distinct appearance in color and shape, and its own preferences. How many kinds of butterflies can you entice into your garden?