We all know that butterflies are pretty creatures. It is said that they bring luck and prosperity to those who see them flapping their colorful wings. But there are also a lot of myths and superstitions around them. One of these exciting beliefs is that butterflies drink blood.
Yes, butterflies drink blood but not directly from humans or animals, as they do not have mouthparts to pierce the skin or blood tissues. They drink blood that is spilled or stagnated from dead bodies to gain the minerals, like how they obtain from mud puddling!
Do butterflies drink human blood?
Most butterflies drink nectar (or drink blood or sweat or urine or tears), but they don’t defecate. They excrete in liquid form through their bodies, which makes the process very efficient.
There are several reasons why butterflies are able to do this. First, they have very small stomachs, so food is digested quickly and efficiently. Second, they eat only a small amount at one time so that the digestive process doesn’t take long. Third, they generally live in areas where there is plenty of moisture available for them to use as a waste product.
Butterflies can also digest other things when they don’t want to eat real food. For example, ants will sometimes bring sweet liquids up to their nests and feed them to the larvae before they hatch out into adults. This is how some birds get their energy without eating seeds or insects directly from the ground.
What is the primary source of nutrition for butterflies?
Butterflies take food by the proboscis, which they can curl and uncurl to take in food (like a straw). They only feed on liquids (i.e.) nectar from flowers. They also ingest juicy fruits and take in nutrition through them as their digestive system does not have the ability to chew anything solid. Thus the only way for them to take in food is through liquids.
- Primary sources of nutrition for butterflies are nectar and juicy fruits.
- These two resources provide essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.
- Nectar is mainly obtained from flower types such as sunflowers, dandelions, snapdragons, asters, and daisies.
- In addition to these flowers, butterflies also feed on various types of leaves, bark, stems, and seeds.
Fruits fall into two categories: 1- poisonous 2. non-poisonous
Poisonous fruits: raspberries, pokeweed berries, thimbleberry, elderberries, currants, mulberries, and poison ivy.
Non-Poisonous fruits: apples, pears, plums, peaches, apricots, grapefruit, strawberries, blackberries, and cherries.
Why do butterflies feed on mud puddles and blood?
Butterflies seek nutrients and minerals present in mud puddles, moist substances, and other rotting matters. At the same time, the larvae cannot consume blood but can only feed on plant parts, like leaves and stems.
They also may feed on sweat on human skin. Tears and blood are unusual sources of minerals. They usually do not drink blood directly from humans or animals but take in the nutrients from the blood spilled or stagnated blood.
Butterflies do not attack humans or animals to drink blood as they do not have mouth parts that pierce into skin or blood tissues!
These butterflies take these nutrients not only for nutritional purposes but also for reproductive purposes. The male butterflies take in these nutrients and transfer them to female ones, which will help in reproduction as it gives the egg better chances of surviving.
Butterflies even take a liking to the urine! Rotting flesh is a big favorite for butterflies! Butterflies also have an appetite for rotting flesh, including human flesh. While they cannot eat it up, they absorb the nutrients and minerals from it.
Butterflies drink in blood but not directly from the source like humans or animals but from the blood that has spilled and stagnant from dead organisms, which is rich in and it is an excellent source of nutrition for the butterflies.