Have found a butterfly

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    I found a butterfly this morning. It was unable to fly. I have brung it inside and tried to feed it clover flowers. Her wings are dry and wrinkled and I don't know what to do to help.

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    I think insects feel pain, or at least something that serves the same purpose as pain in mammels. Just watch an butterfly, caterpillar or any insect get disected live by Ants. They flail around like we humans would if something where eating our behind. They try to survive & escape, but we all know that injuried animals usally don't last long in the wild.

    However, it's likey that they don't have much sense of pain on wings, but once they get well damaged or don't unfold correctly, they don't last long as they can't get around. I think most die of either stavation or ground foragers like Ants.

    BTW, I agree with Norm on not keeping diseased Butterflies alive as it will spoil the work we all put so much time into.



    Well Norm, this butterfly wouldn't be mating or propogating so that wouldn't be a problem of developing an inferior species, but I suppose just the fact we are trying to keep the parasites off them is, as these would die out and MAYBE you would get some survivors that would be resistant to parasites, but my life isn't long enough for the evolutionary process and sometimes species do go extinct so we intervene to try and help where we can. …And yes, Bernie, you may be right, they may have it all wrong in that they could feel pain.We assume what we are told by the 'experts'is correct but todays facts are become yesterdays falacies. I suppose the answer is then – if it looks happy to let it live but if it looks like it is struggling with no chance of improvement, to give it a quick end.



    Another thought to the melting pot – where nature would end the life of a sick or diseased Monarch, are the people who 'save' them actually helping to propagate less than healthy butterflies?



    Well put Bernie!

    A dose of realism is just what people need to hear!

    Science Science Science, and Education Education Education!

    Reality not fantasy!

    Sounds better not coming from a politician, would you agree?



    All you can do is do your best.Butterflies can lay up to a couple of hundred eggs but only two ,allowing for seasonal fluctuations,become butterflies.
    In my opinion,it is a mistake to explain animals behaviour by attributing human characterisations to them(e.g.monkeys "laughing").There is a mass of information we don't know.Can anyone direct me to the research papers that prove insects feel no pain?
    I would tell my students that several hundred years ago,I would have told them that the world was flat and made them learn it for homework.
    Anyone who gets more than two butterflies from half a dozen eggs is doing a great job(but only if you are a butterfly lover).



    Yeah, I was just thinking though, if they feel no pain then All the worry of which way it died could have been avoided as in my opinion if it's not suffering I wouldn't kill it but let it live, then it is up to nature how long it survives. Of course I would have to mollycoddle it so it had lots of nectar flowers and a calm environment.I suppose it is like a human, just because they are crippled doesn't mean to say they need to be put down. I can understand people thinking it is suffering and wanting to end it but I suppose I am a bit of a softy really so if it's not suffering it would stay alive.



    According to entomologists, butterflies do not feel pain as their nervous system is not as well advanced as ours. And while we (people) demand shelter, water, mental stimulation etc, it is not the same for insects, who are used to the vagaries of the weather and Nature. So in my opinion, it did not suffer – but that is no reason why we should make life/death any more unpleasant as it is.

    We (people) tend to put our own feelings onto insects and other animals. We also have different opinions on these things. One of my friends avoids walking on ants… she won't kill anything, even a flea, fly, wasp or maggot. It takes all types to make up the world, and that is what makes it an interesting place, eh?



    In that case then, was the above butterfly actually suffering – I know it probably wanted to fly, mate and do other butterfly things but maybe keeping it alive and feeding it wouldn't have been so cruel. So they do feel pain in their bodies then?



    Yes, the wings are like our finger nails (so to speak) and don't feel pain. There is a photo somewhere here on the site of a tattered Monarch that was otherwise healthy although it had lost about 70% of its wings! Hope you can find it.




    WOW! Just been ready all the killing suggestions of sick butterflies. A person in charge of the butterflies at the Dunedin butterfly house, when I questioned her on all the butterflies damaged wings, told me that butterflies don't have pain receptors and that they can survive with a third missing wings and are none the wiser as fer as it being painful?? Is this right??



    Hello Evana

    Some ideas for you here – hope they help.

    Help! Injured Monarch!


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