J Is For Jealousy and Jardim.

Jealousy. Jardim, Portuguese for garden.

I hope I’m not the only one thinking that the wasp in the background is clearly coveting the fig that the butterfly is feeding on, in my garden’s fig tree. This is of course an excuse to show you this gorgeous and unmistakable butterfly, Charaxes jasius (foxy emperor). It’s a large butterfly that occurs in the Mediterranean region and in Africa. The adults can often be seen during summer sucking the liquids out of overripe fruits. The common Portuguese name for this butterfly is “borboleta-do-medronheiro”, which means “butterfly of the strawberry tree” referring to the larvae’s main host plant.

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© Nightjar, all rights reserved.


  1. rq says

    That is one gorgeous butterfly.
    Also if you read about the fig life cycle, the wasp just may be jealous after all.

  2. DonDueed says

    Bonus third J: the butterfly’s species.

    Is there an actual tree called “strawberry tree”? The plants that yield the fruit are not trees by any stretch of the imagination.

  3. Nightjar says


    The reason why the English common name for Arbutus unedo is “strawberry tree” is a complete mystery to me, as it neither yields strawberries nor is it exactly a tree. Well, maybe they can considered small trees, some can grow quite a bit, but they’re more shrubs than trees. The fruit is reddish and small, but apart from that has nothing to do with strawberries. In Portuguese the shrub is called “medronheiro” and the fruit is “medronho”, while strawberries are called “morango”, so there is no confusion. The English common name drives me mad, actually, it simply makes no sense.

  4. Nightjar says

    Thank you, Caine! I was so focused on that gorgeous butterfly I only noticed the wasp when I saw the photos in the computer. A nice surprise.

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