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Nature Notebook – Butterfly Facts

The Butterfly House is full of butterflies! Here are some fun factoids to enhance your visit:

  • The longwing family of butterflies (including the Julias, zebra longwings and Gulf fritillary) has learned to dissolve pollen for a meal that is more nutrient-laden than nectar. They can live three to six month which is much longer than the average 3-4 weeks of other species.
  • The giant swallowtail is the largest species found in the United States.
  • Julias tickle caiman (small crocodiles) eyes to lap up the salty tears.
  • Painted lady butterflies live on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
  • Cloudless sulfur butterflies also migrate in the winter. They head for south Florida.
  • Male monarchs dip specialized hairs into their black scent pockets (the spots on the hind wings) and wave them about to attract females.

Sarett’s Butterfly House is open to the general public by appointment through September. Appointments can be made online through and our online store, or by phone. Walk-ins are available if there are appointment times. Appointments are every quarter hour from 10 AM – 4 PM Tuesday – Saturday. The Butterfly House is open on Sunday from 1 PM – 4 PM. The cost to visit is $10 for non-member adults (including nature center admission) and $3 for children. Remember the Butterfly House is a netted facility so the weather outside is the weather inside the Butterfly House. The butterflies are most active on warm, sunny days.