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September 18, 2015 / philosophermouseofthehedge

The eyes have it.

two owl butterflies (ALL rights reserved) create an owl-ish face. NO permissions granted. Copy righted

Rainforest humor or were they paid to pose?©

Jeepers creepers, where’d ya get those peepers?

Owl would like to know. And some Amazon lizards are considering copyright infringement.

Rumor is that bats are willing to overlook butterfly mimicking of their flight patterns if there’s an agreement to share the rotten fruit dinners at dusk.

Light heartedly flirty in so many flighty ways, these beauties don’t give a hoot.

owl butterfly (No permissions granted) on a branch ALL rights reserved. Copy righted

Owl wing markings cause controversy. Some insist the eye pattern is an example of species evolving for survival. Some point to the colors and wing shape resembling a particular lizard’s head. Recently, some entomologists decided the designs and colors simply provide camouflage in the foliage or confuse predators as to where the actual body is allowing the slow flying butterfly time to escape.  Better to lose part of a wing than life. ©

Born for center stage with wingspans of five to almost seven inches, owl butterflies create quite a memorable sight.

Currently more than 1,000 representatives of tawny owl butterflies and the forest giant owl butterflies performing ballets in the rainforest setting at the HMNS.

The exotic performers arrived well rested in luxurious accommodations from Central America. Obviously pleased with the airline’s comfortable pod compartments. Perfect for those sleeping beauty types.

(ALL rights reserved) two owl butterflies (NO permissions granted) on branch. Copy righted.

Who’s looking at you? Naturally odd.©

Always the amused acrobats, the owl butterflies happily land on heads.

Especially delighted with any small child wearing a purple headband sporting a flower. A living Micky Mouse-eared hat.

Whispering, no doubt, into tiny ears, “Come fly with me.”

Owl butterflies (NO permissions granted) on little girl's head. ALL rights reserved. Copy righted

This little one was thrilled. Her little sister was almost in tears at being overlooked by the performers. Big sis took off the headband, placed it properly on her little sister’s head, and tried to tell her to stand still. The butterflies were discussing another landing as we left.©

Simple joy.

Soaring fuzzy thoughts

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

1938. Ethel Waters was the first to record “Jeepers Creepers”. Sing along with her here. (Lyrics included, bound to make you smile.)

Three owl butterflies in the (NO permissions granted) HMNS rainforest. ALL rights reserved. Copy righted

Social butterflies waiting for their cues.©

ALL rights reserved. A bunch of zebra marked butterflies (ALL rights reserved) hanging on a branch (Copy righted)

Since the owl markings were taken, this butterfly group chose zebra markings. They provide swooping performances during the day and were settling in for the night on this hanging branch.©

And a few picture of the butterfly habitat of the HMNS Cockrell Butterfly Center.

(There is no truth to the rumors that a comparable tropical rain forest is being suggested as the next home improvement project.)

Cockrell Butterfly Center (ALL rights reserved, copyrighted image) HMNS.NO permissions granted.

Walking into the three-story glass butterfly habitat at mid level.©

No permissions granted for this image of Waterfall (ALL rights reserved) of the butterfly center. (Copyrighted.)

Visitor in the top level cave behind the 50 foot waterfall.©

View out the bottom cave of the

Last look from the lower cave of the Cockrell Butterfly Center. Staff checks each exiting visitor for hitchhiking butterflies.©


  1. Kate Crimmins / Sep 18 2015 1:04 pm



  2. pensitivity101 / Sep 18 2015 1:06 pm

    Amazing markings aren’t they.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 2:46 pm

      Almost unbelievable. Oddly they really do fly very very slowly,so you get really good looks at them. That and the fact that the butterflies seem to think they are undiscovered starlets waiting for a producer to notice and put them on camera in a staring role. Thanks for soaring by

      Liked by 1 person

  3. memoirsofahusk / Sep 18 2015 1:35 pm



  4. Littlesundog / Sep 18 2015 2:53 pm

    I love the eye-spot butterflies. Many of the woodland species have these lovely and interesting markings. We are having a spectacular show of butterflies this year and I haven’t even seen the bulk of monarchs come through yet! They surprising thing (and I learned it on someone’s blog) is they love basil…. and it’s true! My basil has flowered out now and the butterflies and skippers are all over it! Nice post, my friend!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 4:09 pm

      Ah, that confirms it. The butterflies here swarm our basil and Lantana…thought maybe they were picky connoisseurs or something. Butterflies are nature’s flying art projects – moving billboards that are welcomed. Thanks for the flighty comment

      Liked by 2 people

  5. sustainabilitea / Sep 18 2015 3:50 pm

    Butterfly gardens are so much fun! We have a butterfly bush outside our living room window, which draws monarchs (I wish there were many, many more), bees, and hummingbird moths (speaking of mimics.) Enjoyed your informative post and hope the weekend doesn’t flutter by too quickly.


    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 4:14 pm

      Luckily the Mexican heather and Lantana claimed a spot by the kitchen windows. Always a lot of winged traffic there. It’s a busy time of year as the travelers are gathering for a trip and those here are loading up before the crowds. Thanks for the fluffy comment – hope the weekend weather lures you outside to bask in fall.


  6. sportsattitudes / Sep 18 2015 3:52 pm

    It seems as though there is a never-ending number of creatures we share the planet with. I had never heard of or seen these little guys before today. They look like naturals at being…natural.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 4:54 pm

      Animals constantly best people in the “fancy dress” category. Thanks for dressing up a comment


  7. Paul / Sep 18 2015 6:31 pm

    Beautiful Phil. I seem to attract butterflies in general and it is not unusual when the monarchs are swarming for me to have a few butterflies resting on me. I’m not sure why but it has always been that way. Perhaps it’s because I stick up so high in the air – I can be seen from a long way away. ha!

    The butterflies in your post are gorgeous – the eyes are fun. They are such peaceful creatures – it is relaxing just watching them.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 6:39 pm

      It was cool, well, actually it’s not at all cool in the rainforest even with the lovely waterfall, but a lot of fun even if it felt like outside temps. Paul, you’d love these butterflies – the casually float and slowly saunter through the air…and do love to land on people’s heads. There was this rather elegantly dressed elderly man with shiny silver hair who the butterflies loved. There was always one perched on his head. He was quietly smiling. Not everyone was chosen! You, no doubt would be – butterflies know.
      Glad you flew in for a chat. Is there a coffee chat this weekend?


      • Paul / Sep 18 2015 6:46 pm

        There is Phil – over at Mark’s again.


  8. RobinKingArtist / Sep 18 2015 8:32 pm

    What a delight! Thank you for posting this! It’s fascinating and lovely.
    7 inch wingspan? WOW!! WOW!!!!!
    But…ummm…what if one of those things landed on Bob?

    And LOL re “Jeepers Creepers” – a true gem – I learned it as a child and love it still!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 18 2015 9:17 pm

      That early version of “Jeepers” was such a delight to stumble across. It is a smilie song.
      Really interesting was the researcher comparing an Amazon large-eyed lizard’s profile to that butterfly wing. Oddly similar.
      Upon seeing the photos, Bob mused over his previous home where owl butterflies fly free. He mumbled something about “love one for breakfast or lunch…” but Molly says surely I misunderstood…RC Cat just smirked and said “Bob is wise.” Maybe she meant wisecracker? Good idea for the owl butterflies to wing around the Butterfly Center instead of here. A regal paw wave to your realm.


  9. RobinKingArtist / Sep 18 2015 8:33 pm

    And this? “Butterflies are nature’s flying art projects – moving billboards that are welcomed…” Poetry. Brava!!


  10. Robin / Sep 19 2015 3:46 pm

    Simple joy, indeed. 🙂


  11. heretherebespiders / Sep 19 2015 10:57 pm

    Rats, the link to the song doesn’t work for me. But I am currently working with less than dial up speeds! First world country my hole.

    Anyway. I always loved mimics – walking sticks are my favourite. So clever!
    Here is my favourite version of Jeepers Creepers:


  12. marthaschaefer / Sep 20 2015 12:58 pm

    Fascinating, Phil!!


  13. jannatwrites / Sep 21 2015 4:36 am

    Wow, those butterflies are gorgeous! That looks like an amazing place to visit. Several years ago I went to a butterfly habitat at the botanical garden. There monarchs were numerous and quite friendly.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2015 7:23 pm

      Butterflies are so soft: flying by and landings. they don’t seem to worry about anything. Although they should stay away from Molly who tends to like to snatch them out of the air, then release…and look sad. They don’t fly well with wet wings and we have to intervene until they can get back aloft. Butterflies just make you smile. Thanks for fluttering by to leave a comment


  14. colonialist / Sep 21 2015 9:28 pm

    No neighs from me on that!
    They are truly amazing creatures. With that close resemblance to owls, It means that the hide-body theorists need to go and take up trainspotting. Entomology is beyond them.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Sep 21 2015 10:00 pm

      Spooky cool critters. Oddly they float around very slowly – like teenage girls cruising the swimming pool. Couldn’t ask for any finer lovelies. Thanks for fluttering by

      Liked by 1 person


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