Heliconius sapho

Sapho Longwing

Basic Information

General information

Family: “Nymphalidae”
Sub Family: “Heliconiinae”
Estimated Lifespan 52 Days

Garden Specific Information

Estimated Number In Flight: 0
Total Number of Pupae Received: 485
First Flown On: 08/21/03
Last Flown On: 09/28/23

Species Range:

  • “NorthAmerica” “SouthAmerica”

Host plants:

  • Passiflora pittieri

Food Source

Adults are known to feed from a variety of nectar producing flowers and Psiguria for pollen.

Etymology Of Name

The genus Heliconius is broken into two parts: Helico = Helix and nous = reason and knowledge as opposed to sense perception. Sappho was an early Greek female poet, who was referred to as “The Tenth Muse”, by the philosopher Plato.


Sapho Longwings are found below the canopy in established tropical rainforests.

Life history

Males defend a territory looking for receptive females to mate with. After mating, a female lays her eggs in clusters on the growing shoot of the host plants. Once the caterpillars hatch, the larvae are known to feed gregariously until they are ready to form their pupae.


There are multiple generations each year making it possible to find adults year round.

Fun Facts

Sapho Longwings have the ability to emit a sweet smell from a special gland found along their abdomen.