Which country has the most butterfly species ?
Peru has over 3,700 butterfly species - more than any other country and equal to about 20% of the world total. The butterflies of Peru however are still vastly under-recorded, and it is estimated that as many as 4,200 will eventually be discovered.
The highest known concentration of species is at Pakitza, an area of about 4000 hectares within Manu national park. Over 1,300 species have so far been recorded at Pakitza.
The great diversity and abundance of butterflies in Peru is partly due to the extraordinary range of climatic conditions and vast diversity of habitats. Together these create a vast array of ecological niches in which species can exist and evolve.
Not far behind Peru are Brazil, Colombia and Ecuador, each of which have about 3,200 species. In all of Central and South America there are about 7,500 species, compared to about 3,600 for the whole of Africa.