Can Butterflies Eat Applesauce?

Butterflies are innocent and beautiful creatures you often see in your gardens, parks, and backyard. They fly from one plant to another, feeding on the flower nectar and sap.

Can Butterflies Eat Applesauce? Butterflies can eat applesauce because of its sugar content, food scarcity, opportunistic nature, ingredients, and smell. However, it does not provide many benefits or nutrients to these insects, as their natural food source is flower nectar or plant sap.

Butterflies have a proboscis, a long sucking mouth part, which helps them to siphon the nectar and eat different liquid food items, as they do not have teeth that can pierce into the flower or plant. They can only eat or drink the nectar from various food items.

Why do butterflies eat applesauce?

Butterflies can eat many food items that humans feed them, and their favorite food is the natural nectar plants make because it is more beneficial for them, as their digestive is designed to digest only liquid products. They are attracted to applesauce due to the following reasons.

Sugar content

They feed on flower nectar which contains sugar, and are attracted to the eatables with sugar water.

Sugar provides nutrients to these insects; therefore, they eat the products with sugar water.

Moreover, they like to eat apples because they suck the juice from the slices and leave the solid portion.

I have a flower garden, and many butterflies visit my backyard. Once, I fed them applesauce to check whether they liked to eat such eatables, and to my surprise, many butterflies gathered around the sauce and started eating it.

The next day I checked the quantity they consumed, and there was a little difference from the previous day because they have tiny stomachs and suck only the juice from such products.

It is not a common behavior of these insects, as they prefer to eat the natural food source around their living places.

Food scarcity

Butterflies need food to survive because they need energy and various nutrients in their bodies to fly, reproduce, and protect their caterpillars.

There are some seasons when the sap in plants is low, and they cannot get enough food to survive. In such conditions, they can eat other food sources, like applesauce.

Moreover, flowers can get dry and not produce nectar in extreme weather, which causes them to feed on human-provided food.

They explore and forage for other food sources around their habitats, such as they can live in forests, urban areas, and tropical lands with many flower plants.

Attracted to ingredients and smell

They need sodium, potassium, and other minerals to live a healthy life, and they get these minerals from plants and flowers because they are herbivores.

Applesauce uses lemon, apple peels, and cinnamon, which can attract butterflies because they can suck the lemon juice from lemon slices.

They are attracted to lemon sliced, as once I put some squeezed lemons in my garden, and they gathered around the pieces to suck the nectar.

Moreover, the smell of these ingredients also attracts insects, and they eat to check their taste. The smell of fermented and rooting fruit sauces attracts them because these materials produce a sharp odor.

However, it is not safe to offer moldy and expired food items to any bird, insect, or pet in the house because they can get sick from the toxic bacteria in these products.

Opportunistic insect

Butterflies are considered opportunistic feeders that consume the natural sap from plants. However, they cannot suck the nectar deep from the flowers and fly from one plant to another to get adequate food and nutrients.

They do not miss a chance to feed from nectar-rich plants. They have less long proboscis and prefer to eat from less deep and dense flowers. However, they try to suck the sap if they get a chance and move to other plants for a convenient approach.

Their opportunistic nature helps them to survive in different conditions because they can find flowers or plants to get essential nutrients and thrive.

They will investigate and taste the food even if it is non-traditional from their actual diet.

What type of applesauce do butterflies eat?

Applesauce does not meet their dietary needs and does not provide many nutritional benefits, but the aroma, sugar, and apples can attract them towards these food products.

Butterflies can eat the sauce cooked using fully ripe apples because the sugar concentration is high in ripe fruits. Add 2-4 drops of lemon juice because the aroma and the taste of lemons will attract them.

They usually eat over-ripe or rooting fruits because they can extract more juice from ripe fruits.

Moreover, do not add preservatives in the recipe if you want butterflies to eat it because the chemical preservatives are not safe for these little and sensitive insects.

Natural homemade recipes are best for butterflies because they are safe and do not cause health problems if consumed in healthy quantities. 

How can you feed applesauce to butterflies?

There are various ways to attract these colorful and pretty insects to your flower garden because they will help the flowers in pollination and make your landscaping area beautiful with their existence.

I love butterflies and appreciate their presence in my flower garden. I feed them with applesauce by putting a small quantity on a plate and placing it near the flower plants.

It is better to make it juicy and not cook it much to make a thick puree because they cannot suck the liquid or sugar from this product.

Moreover, put the sauce on a flat plate so they do not need to get stuck inside the deep utensil or get their feet into the puree. 

You can feed the fruit sauces to attract butterflies after a few days or weeks, such as after 8-10 days, and make sure to offer a small quantity to avoid problems in their digestive system.

What butterflies species can eat applesauce?

Butterflies usually do not prefer to eat non-traditional and unconventional food sources because they are attracted to sap-rich plants and fruits instead of sauces and other eatables that humans eat.

However, their different species like the applesauce due to their opportunistic and curious nature. They have more than 1700 species, and they have many instincts and behaviors.

Painted lady, Swallowtail, Red Admiral, Erebia Nivalis, Clouded Yellow, and Monarch butterflies can eat sugar substances because their diet is limited to liquid.

They use the straw-like mouth to seep the liquid and sugary water into the desired product and fill their tinny stomach to get energy.

What happens if butterflies eat excessive applesauce?

It can cause severe health problems if butterflies consume food items that are not a part of their natural diet, such as the excessive amount of applesauce and other unconventional food sources can lead to various issues.

The nutrients they need for a healthy life are present in plants and flowers, and excessive quantity cannot balance their nutritional needs.

High sugar consumption can cause digestive problems, as the stomach cannot break down the starch in artificial sugar used in some products, especially market items.

Related Articles:

Can Butterflies Kill Bees?

Are Butterflies Considered Animals?