Lepidoptera aka Butterflies!

During the first Festival of the calendar year, there was a ‘tease’ (far right photo) concerning the new home of the Butterfly garden for the 2020 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.  They had these photo spots for guests.  Through the years, there have been a number of locations (and sizes) of the butterfly house but with all of the construction going on, they once again had to find another location this year.

Guess I should mention the location since it’s not obvious……………in front of The Land, to the left as you face the pavilion.


BTW – did some research before writing this, so I’m going to intersperse a few factoids here and there.  Hope you learn and enjoy the info. 🙂 Let’s start.

  • Butterflies are distributed world-wide, except for Antartica, totaling over 18,500 species.
  • Butterfly fossils date to 56 million years ago.
  • Oldest American butterfly fossil dates to 34 million years ago.
  • Monarch butterfly is native to Americas and is well known for their annual migration to Mexico.

Once the Flower & Garden Festival starts, you run into these topiaries.

Not too far away, is one more butterfly topiary, right outside of the butterfly house.


  • Scales on the butterfly’s wings give them the various colors.
  • They fly when temps are above 81 F.
  • Butterflies hold their wings vertically above their bodies when at rest, moths tend to lay their wings flat when at rest.


One of the first things noticed upon entering the Butterfly enclosure was these brown ‘houses’.  Throughout the Festival, more butterflies are added to the exhbit through ‘pupae’ versus adult butterflies.


Look closely and you can see how some look different?  Each type of butterfly has its own style of chrysalis before metamorphosis and the adult butterfly emerges.


Signs are throughout the enclosure.  This one identifies the butterflies being released – sorry for the quality.  Didn’t notice how bad it looked until I got home and right now…………….I’m unable to get another shot.  😦


  • Butterflies have a typical 4-stage life cycle:  egg, larve (catepillar), pupa (chrsylsis) and adult.
  • Butterfly courtship is often aerial and often involves phermones.
  • Females can produce 100-200 eggs, which is typically afixed to a leaf (food source) with a special glue, hardening rapidly. 
  • Adults can live a week to 3 months in the wild.

More informational signs abound in the exhibit – can you spot the live butterflies versus the ones on the sign?


It’s hard to get any good photos of these guys, but I have a few to share.

I singled this butterfly out on purpose – it’s the State Butterfly of Florida, the Zebra Longwing.


  • Designated by the state legislature in 1996 as our state butterfly.
  • Found throughout Florida in hardwood hammocks, thickets, gardens and commonly in the Everglades National Park in south Florida.
  • Lays their eggs on Passion vine plants.
  • One of the few that sips nectar and eats pollen (!) which is assumed contributes to their longevity in the wild, 3 months +.


I’m ending with this photo.  There are at least 8 butterflies in the photo – can you find them all?  Seemed like every time I glanced at it, I found another – 8 was my top count.


Did you find them all?  🙂











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