These Glasswinged Butterflies Look Like Creatures from an Enchanted Wonderland

Butterflies represent change, endurance and hope. Some common beliefs around the world are that butterflies symbolize rebirth, the passing of a loved on or the life struggles people have endured in order to emerge as a better person. Many cultures around the world even associate them with our souls.

Glasswinged butterflies, whose scientific name is Geta oto, have stunning translucent wings. While they may look like a Photoshopped creation, they are 100 percent real.

Despite appearing delicate, they have the ability to carry nearly 40 times their own weight.

These magnificent creatures look like something you’d see flying around an enchanted fairytale wonderland. Its Spanish name is “espejitos,” which translates to “little mirrors.” This mirror effect allows them to use their translucency to hide in nature. Even the larva of the glasswinged butterfly have unique reflective properties, making them nearly invisible.

The species lays eggs primarily on the tropical toxic plant Cestrum, and once the caterpillars hatch, they feed upon the plant. This is said to make the caterpillars toxic to predators, ensuring they will fulfill their purpose as a butterfly. Mature male butterflies feed on flowers containing a toxic pyrrolizidine alkaloid nectar, which is then converted into pheromones within the body to attract females.

Adult glasswinged butterflies often migrate considerable distances, and the males are known to gather in large groups to exhibit their mating displays competitively. Although glasswinged butterflies are mainly found throughout Colombia, Panama and Mexico, they have been spotted fluttering in Florida as well.