Monarchs and Butterflies are Short-Lived Fliers

More than 170,000 different types of butterflies and moths fly through the North American skies.

These insects belong to a group called Lepidoptera, meaning “scale wing.”

Butterflies and moths are very similar creatures, but they have one major difference: butterflies fly during the day and sleep at night. In contrast, moths are nocturnal, meaning they fly at night and sleep during the day. Both insects have good eye sight and use antennae to smell flowers and find mates.

Butterflies and moths both begin as caterpillars. They are hatched from eggs onto leaves, which they can eat when they are born. When butterflies and moths are ready to become adults, they spin silk cocoons in which they transform. During spring, they hatch out of these cocoons and become beautiful butterflies or moths.

Sadly, most moths and butterflies will survive just one season. Some butterflies, like the Monarch however, can survive during the winter. Because so few survive the winter, the monarch population is unfortunately dwindling.

[Source: Simpson Street Free Press Archives]

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