Up Close with Butterflies at Krohn Conservatory
One of Cincinnati’s favorite springtime traditions is the annual Butterfly Show at Krohn Conservatory. When I found out that my friend Terrie had never been to the Butterfly Show, I invited her and her 5-year-old son, Denver, to join me on an outing.
A giant monarch butterfly on the outside of the conservatory greeted us and revealed the theme of this year’s show: The Majestic Monarch.
As we entered the exhibit area, the first thing we noticed was a profusion of brightly colored flowers and giant figures of monarch butterflies.
We then became aware of some fluttering around the perimeter of the room. Denver’s eyes widened in wonder as he went off to pursue the fluttering creatures about the room.
The more we looked, the more we noticed butterflies everywhere. Lots of them. And lots of different kinds. While some fluttered about the room, others were parked on a tree or flower.
We noticed groups of butterflies congregating at a feeder tray filled with fresh fruit, and other butterflies clinging to vertical feeders.
Touching the wings of a butterfly is a no-no, but Krohn Conservatory has jasmine-scented “landing pads” available for visitors who want a close encounter with a butterfly.
You just can’t beat the look of delight on a kid’s face when he has his first butterfly encounter.
Blue Morphos are one of the most popular butterflies, according to Krohn Conservatory Director Andrea Schepmann. Denver was thrilled when we were able to coax one onto his finger.
These large butterflies are brown on the underside, but when they spread their wings, they reveal a shimmery blue.
Don’t be surprised if a butterfly lands on your shirt, purse, or even your head. Denver got excited when one landed on his mom.
While interacting with the butterflies is great fun, the show has an educational component as well. Past shows focused on a country of origin and its culture. Andrea Schepmann explained, “This year, we’re replacing that cultural content with a very scientific message. We hope the message hits a little closer to home with all our visitors, that they understand by the time that they leave here that they can become part of the conservation effort worldwide to save the monarchs.”
The Krohn Conservatory Butterfly Show runs through June 19, 2017.