Question Mark Butterfly (Polygonia interrogationis)
Red Admiral Butterfly (Vanessa atalanta)
Hackberry Emperor Butterfly (Asterocampa celtis)
Butterflies don’t just subsist on nectar. What exactly do they eat — actually they drink — you might ask? Certain species of butterflies actually prefer foods such as decaying fruit, decaying animal tissue, bird droppings, manure or tree sap.
The various butterflies in the photos above were dining on a banana that I placed outside in a flower pot saucer. Over several days of sun and rain the banana has almost deteriorated — and the butterflies are loving it! As are certain other insects. Don’t look if you’re squeamish about rotten fruit or large flies…
If you have a butterfly garden — or even if you don’t, but just love butterflies! — consider providing some not-so-flowery treats for them. You might be surprised at what shows up!