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Blue Morpho Butterflies living in the Cockrell Butterfly Center

gorgeous coloration results from light refraction


The gorgeous iridescent blue of the Blue Morpho butterfly’s upper wing surface is not actually a color - it is due to the reflection and refraction of light from tiny ridges and pits on the scales covering the wings. 

Many a photographer has been frustrated when a Blue Morpho lands, as it typically does, with its wings closed: the underside is a much less showy dark brown with subtle eyespots.  

You can see three species of Blue Morpho in the center:  Morpho peleides, the common Blue Morpho; Morpho menalaus, Menalaus Blue Morpho; and Morpho achilles, Achilles Blue Morpho.  If you are lucky you may also see the White Morpho, Morpho polyphemus.

These butterflies do not visit flowers; instead  they sip the fermenting juices from overripe fruit.
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