Heliconius hecale

Tiger Longwing

Basic Information

General information

Family: “Nymphalidae”
Sub Family: “Heliconiinae”
Estimated Lifespan 30 Days

Garden Specific Information

Estimated Number In Flight: 19
Total Number of Pupae Received: 6086
First Flown On: 10/21/02
Last Flown On: 07/12/24

Species Range:

  • “NorthAmerica” “SouthAmerica”

Host plants:

  • Passiflora oerstedii
  • Passiflora vitifolia
  • Passiflora auriculata
  • Passiflora platyloba

Food Source

Adults commonly nectar at various flowers. Lantana is one of their favorites. Adults also collect pollen on their proboscis that is digested.


The butterfly is found in forested areas.

Life history

After mating females will lay groups of eggs on the tender new shoots of the Passiflora vine. Caterpillars will eat and remain on hostplant until pupation.


In their range there are multiple generations making it possible to find adults year round.

Fun Facts

Longwings participate in another fascinating behavior known as communal roosting. Circadian communal roosting in butterflies occurs when a number gather to rest for the night, typically on a single branch. These communal roosters can be quite numerous and can consist of single or a variety of species.