When you think of butterflies, there may not be an immediate correlation to Reptiles, but they may have a more common relationship than previously tho
When you think of butterflies, there may not be an immediate correlation to Reptiles, but they may have a more common relationship than previously thought. The Lepidoptera group, which includes moths and butterflies, have adapted to exploit obscure sources of nutrition, like tears. Butterflies and other insects (like bees) have been documented sipping the tears of Reptiles, like Turtles and Crocodilians. According to this scholarly article, "adult Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) of many species frequently visit moist ground, perspiration, tears, excrements, or animal carcasses to suck water and dissolved nutrients, a behavior conventionally termed `mud-puddling.'" To be even more specific, tear drinking is termed, "lachryphagous." This is required because their normal diets of flower nectar are lacking key nutrients and vitamins. This is deemed common in tropical regions for Butterfly and Moth species and it seems that these river Lepidopterans take full advantage of the coexisting river Turtles and Crocodilians.
Butterflies flock to sip the tears of Turtles in the Amazon!