Rainforest Butterflies Facts: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Jennifer Lowery

Jennifer has taught elementary levels K-3 and has master's degrees in elementary education and curriculum/instruction and educational leadership.

There are many amazing creatures that enjoy the tropical rainforest environment. In this lesson, learn why many types of butterflies are found in the rainforest, identify some unique rainforest butterflies, and learn why their habitat is shrinking.

Wild, Wet Habitat

Have you ever heard of a place called a rainforest? You can probably guess what type of environment this is based on the two words that make its name. Rainforests are places where there are lots of trees and plants that grow well thanks to a warm, wet climate. Rainforests can be found in many parts of the world, including South America, Africa and Asia.

Rainforests like this one have lots of trees and plants thanks to the warm, wet climate.

These tropical areas are perfect habitats, or natural living areas, for all kinds of animals. In particular, many beautiful butterflies call these rainforests home.

Can you guess why butterflies would enjoy living in a rainforest environment? Think about what types of plants like lots of water and warm weather. Did you say flowers? You're right! Butterflies love flowers because they feed on the nectar, or sugary liquid, that flowers produce.

Flowers aren't the only food source available to butterflies in the rainforest. Many trees in the rainforest also produce fruit, and this provides another sugary snack for butterflies. It is not uncommon to see many butterflies gathered on a mango or banana that has dropped to the rainforest floor.

Beautiful Butterflies

So, let's learn about some of the cool butterflies that hang out in the rainforest. One unique type is an owl butterfly. Can you guess how it gets its name? This butterfly has distinct markings on its wings that look like the eyes of an owl. You'll have to look for these creatures in the early morning or evening hours if you want to see them flying about!

The owl butterfly flies through the rainforest in the morning and evening hours.

Quick! What's that bright blue creature soaring through the trees? No, it's not a blue bird. It's a blue morpho butterfly, although it might be easy to confuse it with a bird. This butterfly has a brilliant blue color, and it is one of the largest rainforest butterflies. When its wings are spread wide, its wingspan can be anywhere from five to eight inches!

The blue morpho is one of the largest and most beautiful rainforest butterflies.

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