The 16th Annual Butterfly Festival just came to a close at Kidspace. Every March, the festival starts with our famous Caterpillar Adoption Days. Families adopt small caterpillars or larvae and watch them eat, grow, form a chrysalis, and eventally become an adult butterfly. Thanks to our amazing guests and Kidspace members who participated during this six week program, over 8,200 caterpillars were given names, loving homes, and then sent out into the world to polinate and make all of our gardens a little bit brighter.
Why are Butterflies Good for the Environment?
Since butterflies are such good pollinators, releasing them also helps plants. The diet of adult butterflies consists mostly of nectar from flowers, like in the Bee and Butterfly Garden at Kidspace. While gathering nectar, butterflies pick up pollen on their feet and wings and transfer it to neighboring flowers and plants. This continues the life cycle of many plants that other animals depend on for survival. During warm spring and summer days, you will see many butterflies fluttering around Kidspace and Brookside Park looking for plants and continuing their life cycle. And as the cycle of life and food chain goes, butterflies are also an important food source for many animals such as frogs, lizards, and birds.
What do Butterflies do when it Rains?
One very curious child asked me at the Museum the other day where butterflies go when it rains because she never sees them on rainy days. The answer is they try not to get their wings wet by taking cover. They hide under branches or other dry places and fold their wings down.
Kidspace's 2012 Butterfly Release
This past weekend 2,500 people witnessed our Grand Release of over 1,000 Painted Lady Butterflies into the Kidspace Gardens. Thank you to our partners Insect Lore, The Hollow Trees, Faber Castell, and Lakeshore who helped us make this year's Butterfly Festival unforgettable! If you missed this amazing program, you are in luck - there are still a few more caterpillars that need homes. Stop in the Busy Bee Learning Store at Kidspace this week or call us (626) 449-9144, ext. 5223 to check on quantities.
Butterfly Fun Facts
To learn more, these books are great and also the Seymour Science Blog:
Blog Entry by:
Susan Cardosi-Albert, Retail & Communications Manager, has been with Kidspace Children's Museum for nearly seven years. Previous work includes the Los Angeles Zoo and COSI Science Center after gaining a BA in Broadcast Communications.