Zebra Longwing

Heliconius charitonius

About This Animal

SIZE: 2 ¾ - 4 inch wingspan

RANGE: Peru to Southern United States

HABITAT: Warm damp tropical areas

DIET: Nectar

ON EXHIBIT:  The Butterfly Garden in Ocean Journey

When it is disturbed, the zebra longwing butterfly makes a creaking sound by wiggling its body. At night, large groups of seventy or more will roost together on tree limbs. They return to the same roost night after night. 

The zebra longwing lavae eat the leaves of passion flowers. The passion flower contains a toxin that gives the zebra longwing an unpleasant taste and makes it poisonous to predators. The butterfly drinks the nectar of a wide range of flowers.