Butterfly enthusiasts, rejoice: The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is now home to 30 species of Neotropical butterflies.
The Zoo’s Butterfly Aviary, located inside the World of the Insect building, will house butterfly species like Tiger Leafwing, Isabella Tiger, Pink-spotted Cattleheart, Malachite, and Harmonia Tiger that boast unique coloring like iridescent blue, turquoise, red, yellow, green and white.
“The blue morpho is probably the most eye-catching butterfly that visitors will see in the aviary,” said Cincinnati Zoo senior insectarium keeper Kelli Walker in a press release. “With wings spanning up to eight inches and coloring that must be seen to be described, they really stand out.”
The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden Insectarium Team “receives 100 + butterfly chrysalids weekly and sets them up in an environment optimized for them to complete the final stages of metamorphosis,” according to a zoo press release. Once the butterflies are mature, they are released into the growing aviary each day.
It is recommended that guests who wish for high levels of aviary activity visit during warm weather and sunshine, as butterflies tend to be more social in more favorable weather conditions.
A part of The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden’s new partnership with Monarch Joint Venture includes a public campaign encouraging people to “plant pollinator friendly gardens”, to feed and support the development of local butterflies.
Included with Zoo admission and free for members, the Butterfly Aviary is open daily from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. through the end of October. The Zoo opens at 10 a.m. and closes at 5 p.m. Members may enter at 9 a.m.
The Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden is located at 3400 Vine St., Avondale. For more info, visit cincinnatizoo.org.
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