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If you've ever been to a butterfly conservatory, a butterfly from Taiwan may have fluttered by or landed on you!

In Taiwan, many people make a living through butterflies directly or indirectly. Butterfly farms breed large numbers of butterflies and send pupae to butterfly houses and gardens around the world. By experiencing butterflies, people learn about wildlife diversity and conservation.

Butterfly watching is a popular part of Taiwan's ecotourism, giving tourists a chance to observe and appreciate the country's diverse butterflies. These activities bring money to local communities, so the local people are even more willing to protect butterflies.

With such striking colors and patterns, it's no wonder that butterflies are used in artwork and crafts too. Until about 40 years ago, butterfly specimens were often framed or used to decorate products such as bookmarks, coasters, and even handbags.

Some butterfly species may hold the keys to life-saving medicines. One species, Catopsilia pomona, was discovered to contain a chemical that limits the spread of cancer.

Check out these butterfly handicrafts!

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Image Credits:

This is a collaborative project between the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) and the National Museum of Natural Science in Taiwan (NMNS) to share and exchange their digital resources and extend their outreach to global audiences.Photos: © National Museum of Natural Science Taiwan