Butterflies

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Dictionary Meaning and Definition on 'Butterflies'

Butterflies Meaning and Definition from Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913)
    Butterfly \But"ter*fly`\, n.; pl. Butterflies. [Perh. from the color of a yellow species. AS. buter-fl[=e]ge, buttor-fle['o]ge; cf. G. butterfliege, D. botervlieg. See Butter, and Fly.] (Zo["o]l.) A general name for the numerous species of diurnal Lepidoptera. Note: [See Illust. under Aphrodite.] Asclepias butterfly. See under Asclepias. Butterfly fish (Zo["o]l.), the ocellated blenny (Blennius ocellaris) of Europe. See Blenny. The term is also applied to the flying gurnard. Butterfly shell (Zo["o]l.), a shell of the genus Voluta. Butterfly valve (Mech.), a kind of double clack valve, consisting of two semicircular clappers or wings hinged to a cross rib in the pump bucket. When open it somewhat resembles a butterfly in shape.
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Wikipedia Meaning and Definition on 'Butterflies'


A butterfly is a mainly day-flying insect of the order Lepidoptera, the butterflies and moths. Like other holometabolous insects, the butterfly's life cycle consists of four parts, egg, larva, pupa and adult. Most species are diurnal. Butterflies have large, often brightly coloured wings, and conspicuous, fluttering flight. Butterflies comprise the true butterflies (superfamily Papilionoidea), the skippers (superfamily Hesperioidea) and the moth-butterflies (superfamily Hedyloidea). All the many other families within the Lepidoptera are referred to as moths.

Butterflies exhibit polymorphism, mimicry and aposematism. Some, like the Monarch, will migrate over long distances. Some butterflies have evolved symbiotic and parasitic relationships with social insects such as ants. Some species are pests because in their larval stages they can damage domestic crops or trees; however, some species are agents of pollination of some plants, and caterpillars of a few butterflies (e.g., Harvesters) eat harmful insects. Culturally, butterflies are a popular motif in the visual and literary arts.

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Words and phrases related to 'Butterflies'


'Butterflies' in famous quotation sentence


* I only ask to be free. The butterflies are free. - Charles Dickens

* It's all right to have butterflies in your stomach. Just get them to fly in formation. - Dr. Rob Gilbert


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Butterflies Sample Sentences in News


  • Monarch butterflies plummet 90 percent, need protection
    Monarch butterflies are dying off fast, with 90 percent gone in the last 20 years, and they urgently need endangered species protection, a coalition of environmental and health groups said Tuesday. The cause of their decline is the rapid loss of milkweed, the plant on which they feed and breed, largely due to due to herbicide spraying on genetically engineered cor Read more on this news related to 'Butterflies'
  • Environmentalists Petition to Put the Monarch Butterfly on the Endangered Species List as Its Population Plummets
    The spectacle of monarch butterflies working their way back to their winter breeding grounds, across hundreds or thousands of miles, is the longest known insect migration on Earth.   It’s such a popular event, and the monarchs are so beautiful—their brilliant orange wings bordered with a black-polka-dot hem—that seven states have named monarch butterflies t Read more on this news related to 'Butterflies'
  • Monarch Butterflies need Endangered Species Act protection
    As monarch butterflies are beginning their epic migration from Canada and the U.S. to Mexico for the winter, concerns about the drastic rate at which they're disappearing from the landscape have led environmental and health organizations to petition the government for federal protection. This week, the Center for Biological Diversity, Center for Food Safety, X Read more on this news related to 'Butterflies'

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