Skip Navigation

Species Search:
Ask an Expertthreatened and/or endangered


My kids would like to know where butterflies go to sleep at night. We have mostly swallowtails, but also many clearwings. Thanks, Wayne

Wildlife Expert - Ken Burton

First of all, clearwings are moths, not butterflies. Also, insects don't sleep. Sleep is purely a vertebrate process, and only the "higher" vertebrates at that. Insects have periods of inactivity but they are always "awake." They select safe, sheltered sites such as the undersides of leaves in which to spend the night. Most of them don't live very long and so don't have all that many nights to begin with.

New Search