One of my guests said that there are rumors that butterflies are not actually the real name. Butter?? Flying? Does not make any sense at all. The rumors said it should have been “flutter by”, but the person who gave the name suffer from dyslexia, he wanted to put flutter by but wrote it as butterfly instead!. Flutter by make more sense though. Something flying and passing by..
These wing wonder attract most of the people whenever they flying close by. In Malaysia there are 1008 species of butterflies and Langkawi recorded more than 400 spp. This number is greater than Sri Lanka, even thought Sri Lanka is a well known butterflies destination.
Butterflies come from the phylum of insecta under the order of Lepidoptera. The name Lepis mean scales and ptera mean wings in Greek. Butterfly undergo a very unique cycle where known as full metamorphosis cycle. Starting from eggs when they hatched they turn into caterpillar. This stage they undergo feeding marathon where they double up their size in just few day or weeks.
After had enough food they sleep in cocoon where we called it chrysalis. In about a week or depend on species, emerge a beautiful adult creature that we call butterflies flying around feeding and enjoying their short lifespan before prepare for mating, breeding and then die. And the cycle starts again.
Butterflies play a very important role in ecosystem. Beside being a very pleasant view in a garden they also help to distribute the pollen. And it is one of the best indicator for the environment. Loss of habitat and deforestation will greatly reduce the number of species. One can see more species of butterflies in villages compare to cities. Once gone, their nonexistence will also affect the food chain. Geckos , flycatcher and other species of birds and bats that sometime hunt early in the evening will lose one of their food source . All of these will be affected.
It is very easy to attract butterflies to visit your home or certain place. The immediate way are using crushed pineapple. Put it in thin fabric such as women socks. Skoll beer will do the trick as well. Another one not highly recommended is Urine!!. For long term effect plant something nice and beautiful around the garden. Ixora example. Flowering plant that produce nectar attract butterflies. Plant a citrus backyard, this will ensure that caterpillar can eat there, they prefer citrus tree such as lime. Don’t worry if you see they eat all the leaves. This type of plant design by nature to become food for caterpillar. It is only for temporary. After that they will survive until the next season of caterpillar.
I love butterflies watching and learn more about it. I am truly blessed because my house and jobs bring me closer to nature and enjoy some of the butterflies that make my life more colorful like their wings. Do protect them, I’m sure all of us want our future generation to enjoy the gracefulness of common birdwing flying around as we do now.