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Can Butterflies Fly in the Rain?

Can Butterflies Fly in the Rain?

Butterflies are one of the most beautiful creatures on Earth. They’re also quite fascinating, and many people want to know whether they can fly in the rain. In this epic guide, we will answer that question and provide some tips on how to help butterflies stay safe during inclement weather. So keep reading to learn everything you need to know about butterflies in the rain!

Butterflies in General

Butterflies are one of the most beautiful and interesting insects in the world. They come in an array of colors, sizes, and patterns and are found almost everywhere on Earth. Butterflies have been around for over 50 million years, with approximately 17,500 species worldwide.

Most butterflies go through four distinct stages during their life: egg, caterpillar (larvae), chrysalis (pupa), and adult butterfly. The caterpillar stage may last up to several weeks while the adult butterfly only lives up to two weeks or so before dying.

Butterflies typically feed on nectar from flowers but some also eat pollen, decaying fruit, tree sap, rotting animal matter, or even bird droppings! They can often be seen fluttering around gardens and parks looking for food.

Butterflies are important pollinators of plants and flowers because they spread pollen from one flower to another, fertilizing them in the process. This helps keep plant populations healthy and is also beneficial for humans as it helps increase crop yields.

Butterflies in General

Butterflies have four wings that are connected by tiny scales which give them their beautiful colors and patterns. These scales help protect them from predators and also help regulate their body temperature so they can stay warm during cold days or nights.

However, butterflies are declining in population due to habitat destruction, climate change, pesticide use, and other human activities. It’s important to do what we can to protect these delicate creatures so they can continue to grace our gardens! [1], [2], [3], [4]

What do Butterflies Do When It Rains

Many people wonder if butterflies can fly in the rain. The answer is yes, but they may not always choose to do so.

When it rains, butterflies typically seek shelter from the wet conditions. Butterflies obviously prefer drier areas during rainy weather and will migrate to higher elevations or sheltered valleys when storms threaten.

The most common way butterflies seek shelter from the rain is hiding underneath leaves or other locations, called roosts. Roosts are ideal for butterflies because they provide protection from rain and wind. You probably saw butterflies resting on bark, leaves or other surfaces with their wings closed at some point. In fact, butterflies already seek cover in dusk since the temperatures at night are unsuitable for flying.

What do Butterflies Do When It Rains

In severe weather conditions, such as heavy storms or hurricanes, even the most resilient butterflies cannot withstand the strong winds and pelting raindrops and must seek shelter indoors or in protected areas. [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6]

Why Do Butterflies Hide When It’s Raining?

So now you know that butterflies can fly in the rain, but why do they hide when it’s raining?

The main reason is because their wings are delicate and get easily wet. When wet, their wings become heavy and waterlogged, making it harder for them to fly. In addition to this, the wet conditions make it difficult for them to feed by accessing nectar sources. Lastly, being out in the open also makes them more vulnerable to predators as they cannot rely on camouflage or hiding places like they typically would.

Why Do Butterflies Hide When It’s Raining?

The drop in temperature is also an issue for butterflies as cold weather can be fatal to them. Butterflies need to maintain a certain body temperature to stay alive. Butterflies are unable to heat up and regulate their body temperature in the cold rain since they rely completely on the temperature of the environment.

Butterflies are also incredibly tiny creatures and can easily be blown away by strong winds in a storm. The rain also creates mud, which makes it hard for them to move around or take off into the air.

Because of these reasons, butterflies tend to seek shelter from bad weather conditions like rain. They need to stay dry and warm in order to survive, so they will hide under leaves or fly to drier areas whenever possible.

If butterflies tried to fly in the rain, they risk getting wet – which may lead to them becoming ill or more vulnerable to predators. In addition, because of a small size and weight, butterflies are more likely to be brought down or exhausted by raindrops. Therefore, it is usually best for them to stay out of the rain and seek shelter! [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6]

Can Water Kill Butterflies?

So as you can see butterflies do not like wet conditions, but can water kill them?

As we mentioned, raindrops can certainly harm butterflies, but it is highly unlikely to kill them. Water can disorient a butterfly and make it difficult for them to fly, which can lead to them becoming exhausted and potentially result in death. However, this usually only happens in extreme situations where the weather is particularly bad or the butterfly has been exposed to water for too long.

Butterflies generally survive when briefly exposed to rain or water as they can find shelter quickly enough and don’t get too wet. In addition to this, their wings are covered with tiny scales that help protect them from moisture absorption.

In fact, when a butterfly gets wet, they will just stay still until the water evaporates. This is why you may see a butterfly perched on the ground after rainstorms or near water sources such as ponds, lakes, and streams. Butterflies also tend to bask in the sun after rainstorms to dry their wings.

Can Water Kill Butterflies?

We already talked about the unique characteristics of butterfly wings. The wings are covered with tiny scales that make the wings water repellant, so even if a butterfly is exposed to rain or water droplets, they will not be completely soaked in it.

While their wings aren’t 100% waterproof, they are able to survive the rain by simply waiting it out or flying away from it. The scales mentioned above help distribute the water over a larger area rather than absorbing it all in one go, allowing them to fly without too much difficulty during light showers.

However, with time, water can still cause harm to a butterfly. The patterns on butterfly wings can be removed if exposed to water for too long, and this reduces the butterflies protection against predators. [1], [2], [3], [4], [5], [6]


Why should you not touch butterfly wings?

When handling butterflies, it is important to be aware that their wings are delicate and easily damaged. The scales on a butterfly’s wings are what give them their beautiful colors and patterns. If these scales are touched or rubbed off, butterflies partially lose their protection against the elements, making it harder for them to fly and survive. Therefore, it is best to avoid touching a butterfly’s wings if possible.

While it won’t kill the butterfly right away, repeated contact with people can cause a butterfly’s wings to become damaged or weakened, making it so they cannot fly as well and are more vulnerable to predators. That is why it is important to be mindful of the interactions we have with these fragile creatures when out in nature.

What happens to a butterfly in the rain?

When a butterfly is caught in the rain, it needs to stay still and wait for the rain to pass. Butterflies rely on the warmth of the sun and their wings, which helps them to fly. When it is raining, they lose this warmth and their wings become too wet to be able to lift them up into the air. As a result, butterflies can no longer fly in the rain, although they may try and flutter around until eventually becoming exhausted.

When a butterfly is soaked with water during a rainfall, it can also become heavy making it difficult for the butterfly to stay airborne. This makes them more vulnerable as they are unable to escape predators or find shelter more easily than when they were flying.

Can you release butterflies in the rain?

No, it is not recommended to release butterflies in the rain. Butterflies have delicate wings that require dry conditions in order to fly properly. If they are released in the rain or wet weather, their wings can become damaged and they may be unable to fly properly or at all. Therefore if you plan to release butterflies, it is best to wait for a dry day with light winds and no rain.

It’s also important to release them during the daytime hours when they are more active and can find food quickly. Butterflies fall asleep at dusk, so releasing them before dusk will also help them to warm up their wings and get ready for flight.

Can a butterfly fly in the wind?

The answer depends on the type of butterfly and the size and strength of the wind. Most butterflies are agile enough to fly in light to moderate winds, but not strong gusts.

It’s important to note that some butterflies will actively seek out wind currents when flying or migrating because it can help them conserve energy by riding updrafts without needing to flap their wings as much. That said, very high winds can still overwhelm a butterfly’s capabilities and force them back down for landing or shelter.

Can butterflies fly in a storm?

The answer to this question depends on the intensity of the storm. While butterflies are able to fly in light rain showers, they are not able to fly in strong storms with heavy winds and rain.

In general, butterflies do not like wet wings and will seek shelter when it begins raining. This means that if you spot a butterfly in the rain, it is probably looking for somewhere dry to hide. If the storm is particularly bad, then the butterfly may even stay hidden until the weather improves.

Can butterflies fly without the sun?

No, butterflies cannot fly without the sun. Butterflies rely on the heat from the sun to warm their bodies and develop enough energy to fly. Without the warmth of the sun, they lack energy and can become sluggish or unable to take off at all.

In order to fly, butterflies must raise their body temperature up to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. This process is known as thermoregulation and is essential for butterflies to stay airborne. Unfortunately, rain doesn’t provide the same amount of heat that the sun does, so it’s not possible for butterflies to fly in the rain.

Useful Video: Insect Information : What Do Butterflies Do When it Rains?


Butterflies are one of the most beautiful creatures on Earth. They bring vibrant colors to our gardens and flutter gracefully when the sun is out. But can butterflies fly in the rain?

The answer is no. Butterflies do not fly in the rain due to their delicate wings, as they are vulnerable to damage from strong winds and heavy precipitation. Another reason is the trop in temperatures during a downpour, which makes it difficult for butterflies to fly.

Butterflies have adapted over time to seek shelter during rainfall; this could include hovering under trees or staying tucked away in plants and shrubs. If you ever come across any butterflies hiding out in the rain, feel free to admire them from afar! Just remember that it’s best for both you and the butterflies if you don’t disturb them.

Although butterflies can’t fly in the rain, there are still plenty of ways to enjoy these delicate creatures on a rainy day. Watching their colorful wings flutter around your garden is one of life’s most beautiful sights and makes for a great activity for both children and adults alike. You could also try taking some photographs or paintings as a reminder of how lovely our nature friends are.

In conclusion, butterflies sure cannot fly in the rain. But with a little bit of knowledge and care, we can still enjoy these amazing creatures in other ways. Thanks for reading our guide on whether butterflies can fly in the rain! We hope this article answered all your questions and provided helpful tips for how to appreciate these incredible creatures.


  1. https://meadowia.com/how-butterfly-fly-when-it-rains/
  2. https://www.almanac.com/fact/do-butterflies-fly-away-or-hide-when
  3. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-do-butterflies-do-wh/
  4. https://creaturefacts.com/can-butterflies-fly-in-the-rain/
  5. https://askdruniverse.wsu.edu/2017/12/18/butterflies-go-rains/
  6. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/06/200609122914.htm