The Lifecycle of a Butterfly

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Parts of the Butterfly

Butterflies have compound eyes which are made up of thousands of hexagonal shapes. Every hexagon is angled differently to the rest because this allows the butterfly the virtually see in every direction at once. They have limited vision though because of their small brain.

Butterflies have a proboscis for a mouth in which they feed through. The proboscis is essentially a double barrelled straw so they can pretty much only eat/drink liquids.

The butterfly’s wings are their most amazing body part. They have bright colours which warm predators that they are dangerous. Now this may seem strange but they are actually poisonous. The patterns are also exactly the same on both wings.

Life Cycle of a Butterfly

The first stage in the butterfly’s life cycle is eggs. The female butterfly lays her eggs on a leaf and in about five days time they should start to hatch into caterpillars.

A caterpillar pretty much spends all of its time eating and gathering strength for the change into a butterfly. Caterpillars are just like snakes in the way that they shed. They shed their skin about four times and each time they get bigger.

Once the caterpillar has eaten enough it empties its stomach. This causes the pupa to be about half the length of the caterpillar because it no longer needs its stomach because it will only be processing liquids for now on. They can be in the pupa stage for about a week to several months.

Once the butterfly has emerged from the cocoon it has finally finished its journey and can continue to live its life with no more changes. A butterfly will then fly lay its eggs and die. This may seem like a grim life but it keeps the butterflies alive.

So in the end life is great for the butterfly!

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