Common Blue Morpho

Although called the common morpho butterfly, this brilliant blue Neotropical lepidopteran with jewel-like iridescent wings appears anything but common. Members of the species have an uncommonly long lifespan, sometimes surviving more than nine months. However, territorial males can be easily lured to capture by flashing blue, shiny paper and may not live as long in captivity.

As with other morpho butterflies, only the upper sides of the paired wings feature the brilliant blue hue. The unusual wing color is based on light reflection and refraction, not pigments. When their wings are folded they show only the bottom of their wings that are camouflaged dull brown side with "eye spots" This allows for the morpho to fold inward the bright side of its wings when it sleeps and show only the side that blends into the environment.