PacSci Perspectives


Fresh Sheet – April 21, 2018

by | Apr 21, 2018

Morpho polyphemus (White morpho) butterflies eclosing from their chrysalises

Morpho polyphemus (White morpho) butterflies eclosing from their chrysalises.

If you’ve ever stopped by our Tropical Butterfly House after we have received a shipment of pupae, you might have witnessed one of the coolest experiences in there, seeing a butterfly break out of a chrysalis to become an adult butterfly. When something cracks open a hard shell like that, we often want to say that it is hatching. But since butterflies already hatch from an egg as a caterpillar, this stage has its own term. The entomological term for emerging as an adult from a pupa is eclose. When a butterfly ecloses, its wings are shriveled and wet. Then it hangs from the chrysalis to fill and dry its wings and flies off as a full grown adult.

Do you want to see an animal hatching at Pacific Science Center? Instead, go to our dinosaur exhibit in Building 1 and look for the turkey and chicken eggs that should start hatching sometime this weekend. Learn More

Bioproductores de El Salvador
El Salvador

25 – Anaea eurypyle (Pointed Leafwing)
18 – Battus belus (Belus Swallowtail)
40 – Caligo memnon (Owl Butterfly)
25 – Catonephele numilia (Halloween Butterfly)
25 – Eurytides epidaus (Long-tailed Kite Swallowtail)
30 – Eurytides thymbraeus (White-crested Swallowtail)
19 – Heliconius charitonius (Zebra Longwing)
20 – Heliconius hecale (Tiger Longwing)
32 – Heliconius hortense (Mountain Longwing)
10 – Heliconius ismenius (Ismenius Longwing)
48 – Morpho polyphemus (White Morpho)
30 – Myscelia ethusa (Royal Blue Butterfly)
28 – Papilio pilumnus (Three-tailed Swallowtail)
10 – Papilio torquatus (Band-gapped Swallowtail)
20 – Archeoprepona demophon (One-spotted Prepona)
12 – Archeoprepona demophoon (Hubner’s Prepona)
20 – Prepona omphale (Blue Belly-Button)
20 – Tithorea harmonia (Harmonia Tigerwing)

Total = 432


“Fresh Sheet” is our weekly shipment report of pupae on display in the emerging window. Visit Pacific Science Center’s Tropical Butterfly House and meet our newest residents.

These butterflies typically arrive as pupae on the Thursday or Friday before the Fresh Sheet is published. Some of these butterflies will start emerging the day they arrive or the next day, but other species may take a full week before they reach adulthood. After emerging, they may live for a week or even a few months! While we love sharing a variety of species with our guests, we cannot guarantee that any specific species will be flying on the day that you visit Pacific Science Center.

If you are interested in photographing a specific butterfly and would like to be updated about when it is flying in the Tropical Butterfly House, please email with details and your contact information.