Red Passion Flower Butterfly Heliconius erato
The butterfly members of this Order of insects include the popular and usually colorful species. Butterfly groups include monarchs, satyrs, dagerwings, leaf-wings, owls, buckeyes, admirals, checkerspots, crecents, fritillaries, heliconids, riodinids, blues, hairstreaks, coppers, whites, orange-tips, sulphurs and swallowtails.
This Red Passion Flower butterfly belongs to an extremely variable group of Heliconids that several other butterfly groups mimic. As with the Monarch butterfly, this butterfly advertises its unpalatability with characteristic orange and black warning coloration. Other groups of butterflies that are more tasty, benefit from mimicking this butterfly. One of these impostors is the Eresia spp. which was found perched on the same wire. This Heliconid butterfly was photographed in Brazil and feed on Passion Vine and has a whitish caterpillar covered with spines. At night, these butterflies congregate.