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The Glasswing Butterfly (Greta oto)

It is not too common to see transparency in animals, so it is always fascinating when it does occur. So let's look into this little guy, and find out more about them, as well as their transparent wings.

Physical Description and Behavior

These butterflies are well known for their transparent wings that are topped with crimson and white colors. This is actually an extremely vital mutation that helps to protect this butterfly from predators. The clear wings do not reflect light, making it hard for birds and other predators to see them.

Their eggs are laid typically on the nightshade plant. As an adult, they are about 1.2 inches with a wingspan of up to 2.4 inches. They mainly consume nectar from flowers in the genus Lantana, but can consume nectar from other flowers too. In fact, the male butterflies consume Asteraceae flowers, making them toxic for consumption. This chemical is also used later on when it comes to finding a mate. They are also known for eating bird droppings to consume more amino acids. Yuk.

They also migrate at the end of the season. They can travel 12 miles per day at a rate of 8 miles an hour. This is mainly to change elevation.

Males attract females to mate with using a behavior known as Lekking. This is where the males get together in swarms to release pheromones in order to attract one or more females to mate with.

Habitat and Location

This butterfly can be found in Central and South America, as far down as Chile. It thrives in a far more tropical environment. They are found in pretty much all areas of Central America, and are certainly a sight to behold.

Check out this video of one of these butterflies in action!

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