Tropical Butterfly House

Very often you tend to not notice things that are on your own doorstep or even appreciate them.

Dinno Lad Checks Out - Tropical Butterfly House, Wildlife & Falconry Centre

This became apparent to me during the half term week when I made my way to the Tropical Butterfly House, Wildlife and Falconry Centre on Woodsetts Road, North Anston. Granted it was a beautiful day which always helps encourage people to get out and about but I was taken aback by how busy the place was. Not only that there was so much to do and interest all ages as a special week of Halloween Spooktacular events were put on for the visitors.

Having been first opened back in 1995 the Tropical Butterfly House has steadily grown and grown and this year it is expected to top the 100,000 visitors mark for the first time. On entry you are given a detailed map to help on your tour round along with a time table of the day’s events. With the Halloween theme in full swing all 35 members of staff were decked out in weird and wonderful spooky costumes which went down a treat with the kids and many of the shows had a similar theme.

The Swashbuckling Bird Show captivated a very large audience with some slap stick humour while also being very educational. Gentle walks around the centre are easily accessible and many of the animals and birds are free to walk with you. The original butterfly house is a must see part of the day. You enter into a jungle type tropically heated glass roofed house and butterfly’s of all types shapes and sizes flutter around you. This has to be seen to be believed and the amazement on people’s faces at the sheer beauty of these fascinating creatures.

With so much on display including, Birds of Prey, Parrots, Meercats, Snakes and many farm yard animals there is something for everyone. The Butterfly Café is ideally situated next to the children’s adventure playground and this looked a popular location for many of the visitors many of whom had come from far a field.

The centre is open all year round and for more details regarding opening times and admission charges contact 01909 569416 or visit their web site www.butterflyhouse.co.uk

The next main event will be “Stables and Sleigh Bells” from December 19th until Christmas Eve when you’ll be able to meet Father Christmas in his enchanting grotto.

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Posted in Butterfly House |

Turn Your Kids Loose Among The Butterflies

The ever-balmy Butterfly House invites kids to a weekend of radio-controlled critter races, steel drum music and bug crafts at its annual “Hot, Hot, Hot” celebration.

Organizer Amy Hammann explains what makes the tropical conservatory so cool.

• What’s planned for this weekend? The kids can put a butterfly — a play one, of course — on a board and stomp it, and they try to catch it with their nets and squirt a water strider across a kiddie pool. They can make their own bugs with funny shoes and big eyes. … They’ll also learn about scales and why butterflies have those beautiful colors.

• What else will kids learn about butterflies? They eat with their proboscis, which is rolled up like a straw when they’re not using it and then they unroll it to suck up juices.

• So why must the Butterfly House be so warm? For tropical butterflies to be able to fly, it has to be at least 82 degrees. They literally can’t fly if it’s cool. Our entry and exit vestibules are highly air conditioned so when a guest opens a door and is trying to come in, the butterfly will feel that cold and hightail back the other way.

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Posted in Butterfly House |

Butterfly Plants to Help Poor

HUNDREDS of butterflies will fill the sky for the launch of Butterfly Plants for Poverty at Buaraba this Sunday.

Delphine and Ray Archer and Nathan Vogler get the plants ready for the open day.

Entry is free and several guest speakers will make presentations during the day.

Delphine Archer and her husband Ray started their little slice of heaven to help raise money for poverty-stricken people around the world.

They escaped the rat race by building a garden on acreage.

“There are more than 20,000 butterfly-attracting plants available for sale,” Mrs Archer said.

“It is a great family outing at this award-winning native garden with hundreds of little sweet-singing birds, an animal farm, face painting, crafts, food vans, a rooftop observation deck, butterfly house and 700m of walking paths.”

Mrs Archer said Butterfly Plants for Poverty was run by volunteers and all profits from plant and merchandise sales went to train poor people to start small businesses.

“These people in Africa, India and Asia struggle to earn only enough money to supply just one meal each day,” she said.

Mrs Archer said after training, the person got a small loan to start their business.

As they begin to put poverty behind them the money they repay then goes out to help the next family.

The interest charged is used to provide further business training and to support community projects.

The starting time on Sunday is 9am at 584 Bischoffs Road, Buaraba, which is off the Gatton-Esk Road.

To find out more about this great cause go to www.butterflyplantsforpoverty.org, or visit the Archers’ farm this Sunday at the open day.

The Archers are encouraging the community to consider volunteering for the ongoing operation of the project.

“The pay is low, but the rewards to the environment and humanity are huge,” Mrs Archer said.

DELPHINE AND RAY Archer and Nathan Vogler get the plantsready for the open day.

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Camera Butterfly for iPad 2 and iPhone 4S

Web-design and development company, Creanncy today is pleased to announce the release and immediate availability of Camera Butterfly for iPad 2 and iPhone 4S. We are glad to introduce you to the most unusual and beautiful photo application in the AppStore. Camera Butterfly for iPad 2 is extraordinary photo editor with creative features and butterfly style and painting ability! With Camera Butterfly you can take new or load existing photos or images and paint it with different butterflyes, add amazing butterfly photo frames to your photos.

Camera Butterfly features:
* Photo editor with Butterfly theme and style
* Add different butterflies clipart to your photos or images
* Create your paintings with butterflies
* 3 sizes of all butterflies (small, medium, large) to apply
* More then 30 clipart included
* Attach different photo frames with butterfly style to your photos
* Mix different photo frames with each other
* Apply and undo all manipulations
* Preview all manipulations before apply
* Apply different built in filters and effects to your photos and paintings in app
* Rotate your photos left, right or mirror it
* Import your photos, images or take new (built in camera)
* Reset image to original photo (discard all changes with one touch)
* Fast app engine
* Share function – share your images to Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, etc.
* Preview of original for comparison with new photo

Camera Butterfly – welcome to beautiful nature photo world!

Device Requirements:
* Compatible with iPad and iPad 2/iPhone 4 & iPhone 4S
* Requires iPhone OS 4.0 or later
* 10.9 MB / 11.3 MB

Pricing and Availability:
Camera Butterfly for iPad 2 and iPhone 4S v1.0 is $5.99/$2.99 USD (or equivalent amount in other currencies) and available worldwide exclusively through the App Store in the Photo & Video category. Buy and enjoy! We provide full app support by email.

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Posted in Butterfly Pictures |

Nature Photographer’s Life Full of Birds, Butterflies

Even as a junior at Chico State, nature photographer John Hendrickson knew he wanted to build his life around the outdoors.

Nature photographer John Hendrickson of Clipper Mills poses for a portrait with a California sister butterfly in September 2008

He applied for a $1,000 grant to help create a nature education and wildlife rehabilitation center, and during his last year and a half as an undergraduate student, was able to establish what is now the Bidwell Wildlife Rehabilitation Center.

“A thousand dollars went a little farther back in 1970,” says Hendrickson, who went on later to run Woodleaf Outdoor School for 30 years.

“We started taking care of injured birds (raptors), and got help from the local Audobon Society group,” he recalls.

Leftover seed money went on to help create the early version of Chico Creek Nature Center.

A new exhibit features Hendrickson’s camera work. “Butterflies: The Photography of John Hendrickson” shows through February.

His images of the photogenic but elusive, short-lived insects now grace everything from calendars to coasters — a result of turning over the marketing of his work to a nature photography agent.

Hendrickson, 61, a longtime resident of Clipper Mills, is also an accomplished landscape photographer and expert with birds of prey.

All three of his favorite subjects have been displayed in museums across the country, including in Boston, Miami, and Seattle.

Images for Conservation Fund — a Texas nonprofit organization — named him several years ago one of the world’s top 20 nature photographers.

But the retired teacher says he misses working with children.

His own have grown up and established careers of their own, and thousands of his former Woodleaf students — including hundreds who maintain contact with him — also are adults now.

“I love children pretty much just as much as I do nature,” he says.

He takes on speaking engagements on behalf of outdoor science education and lots of short-term, mostly unofficial volunteer gigs that involve kids, he says.

Hendrickson has developed an extra level of passion for his interests, he says, since being diagnosed with oral cancer a year ago.

“I started treatment on the winter solstice,” he says of the radiation therapy that continued through January. “The first day I was well enough to go out was the spring equinox.”

Abiding by the natural calendar seemed fitting, Hendrickson says.

Checkups since then have shown the disease’s progress to be abating. But the introduction to mortality was a powerful one.

“You don’t go through that and not have it make a meaningful impact on your life,” he says.

The new additional title of “cancer survivor” has led to some rewarding encounters and relationships with young cancer survivors, Hendrickson says.

And his love for nature photography, which never really waned, has come alive with new inspiration.

“I don’t care much now about anything practical,” Hendrickson says, “I just want to create images that are intensely beautiful.”

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Posted in Butterfly Pictures |

Around the World 11/22 – Day Ed

Hugh Grant, the beloved British actor, recently made headlines by accusing British tabloids of hacking his phone.

Grant took action after the papers claimed that he was having an affair with a Warner Bros executive.
Grant was furious, as the article was based on the contents of late night phone conversations between the two.
He is adamant in his belief that the only way they could know what they claim to know is if they hacked his phone.
The Notting Hill star added that whenever he called the police, a photographer would always turn up first.
The press fought back, by saying that they’re driven by a single motivation.
To expose hypocrisy, where famous figures make a living off a clean role-model image
Hugh argued that he never had a good name, referring to a notorious 1995 arrest.
He is determined to sacrfice whatever clean image he has left to win the fight against who he dubbed the bullies in the media.

A butterfly sanctuary in the temperate woods of Mexico.
Millions of monarch butterflies are arriving to provide an annual spectacle that shouldn’t be missed.
These majestic wonders flee the cold winters of Canada and northern United States and travel thousand of miles to hibernate and reproduce in the warmer regions down South.
Hundreds of trees crowded with butterflies can be seen along Mesico’s 13 thousand hectare monarch reserve.
They have travelled more than 2-thousand miles to congregate here.
And to take in the amazing sights, tourists, scientists and locals alike gather here.
Unfortunately, the area occupied by monarch butterflies during this time of the season continually decreased.
One reason was the prolonged drought.
And under such conditions, wild plants that provide food for the butterflies do not grow normally.
Also, illegal logging has threatened the butterflies in western Mexico.

On the borders of Iguazu National Park, Argentina, a new eco-friendly model has been found.
This next generation of models profits ecology and society at the same time.
Called The Triple Bottom Line model, it all started with big plans for the humble yerba mate leaf.
The plant with antioxidants is drunk as tea in South America.
The yerba mate plant is a tropical plant which grows better when protected from the sun.
But most plantations in Latin America cannot do that since they’re located into industrial plots which are free of tress, the result of the use of herbicides.
Guayaki is different in this sense.
The company is located in the heart of the forest.
Their philosophy is to produce quality products while protecting surrouding forests.
All this, while creating local jobs at the same time.
The company’s emphasis on sustainability is a large attraction for its consumers.
By 2020, Guayaki hopes to restore 60-thousand hectars of forests, while providing income to 1-thousand families.
Daniel Choy, Arirang News.

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Posted in Butterfly Farm |

Caledonia Childhood Helped His Dreams Take Wing

Given what he became, Jaret Daniels had the ideal childhood growing up near 6-1/2 Mile Road in Caledonia.

Jaret Daniels, who grew up in Caledonia and now lives in Florida, has been nominated for the $100,000 Indianapolis Prize in conservation for his work with butterflies.

“I was lucky. My parents had a large piece of property – woods and grass and field,” he said.

He collected bugs, became fascinated with them and went on to become an entomologist. Now 43 and an assistant professor of entomology at the University of Florida, he was recently nominated for the Indianapolis Prize, a $100,000 award given every other year to a person who has made notable achievements in conservation. Daniels has focused on butterflies.

“They were easy to get, easy to observe. They were just a lot of fun as a kid to bring in and to raise,” he said. For a career they had other advantages.

“Butterflies were a no-brainer because they’re the most charismatic of insects and one of the few that people will actually travel to see,” he said. Thus they can be a good introduction for the general public to the topic of insect conservation.

Butterflies are pollinators. Although not nearly as important as bees, Daniels said, they are still important.

Some butterflies are also in decline. The Monarch, for example, is declining in the West. Wisconsin has the Karner blue, an endangered butterfly which has been part of the tug of war between environmentalists and developers.

Butterfly numbers and diversity are a good early indicator of the health of an environment, Daniels said. Losing one or two species probably won’t have an effect, but losing too many pollinators will affect whether we can raise enough food to meet human needs. We don’t know where that balance point is, he said.

Aside from the property where he grew up, Daniels said his parents, Nancy and Richard, nurtured his interests although they were not scientists themselves.

Susan Borkin, who is head of life sciences and curator in invertebrate zoology at the Milwaukee Public Museum, recalls that it was Daniels’ mother who inquired about an internship for her son while he was a student at The Prairie School. Daniels said that was his first introduction to real science.

From a quiet, enthusiastic and knowledgable intern, Borkin has seen Daniels’ career grow. He is a pioneer in butterfly conservation, Borkin said, and in trying to advance the entire field. She mentioned meetings he has arranged between academics who produce basic knowledge and people from museums and zoos who do the practical work of breeding and releasing butterflies.

“We know very little about these endangered butterflies to begin with, what it takes to conserve them and especially what it takes to rear them in captivity,” Borkin said.

The 29 nominees for the Indianapolis Prize will be winnowed to six finalists and the prize will be awarded in September.

Daniels said it has been an honor to be named in the same group as the other 28 nominees. Among such a group, Daniels said, it’s also an honor to represent the very small creatures – the insects – who really run the world.

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Posted in Butterfly Farm |

Shendurney Rich in Butterfly Diversity

A three-day survey in the Shendurney Wildlife Sanctuary has recorded 176 species of butterflies. The findings of the survey, conducted jointly by the Travancore Natural History Society (TNHS) and the Kerala Forest Department from November 11, make the 171-sq km sanctuary one of the richest butterfly-diverse areas in the Western Ghats.

For the survey the entire sanctuary was covered by setting up six base camps at vantage places like Kattalapara, Kallar, Pandimotta, Umayar, Rockwood, and Rosemala. The highest number of butterflies was recorded at Umayar (105 species) and they included the Travancore Evening Brown, the Plain Banded Awl and the Indigo Flash. The Kallar area had the second highest number (96) species. Nymphalids, the brush-footed butterflies, topped the family list with 58 species followed by Skippers (40) and Lycaenids or the Blues (37). Of the Papilionids, the swallowtail butterflies, 15 species out of the 19 known species in the Western Ghats were recorded.

The Southern Birdwing, the largest Indian butterfly, was seen in almost all the regions of the sanctuary. Seventeen of 33 Pierrids were also recorded in the region.

The TNHS had earlier made a checklist of 257 species of butterflies in the sanctuary through a decade-long observation at different seasons.

There are 334 species of butterflies recorded in the whole of the Western Ghats and the present survey takes the total number of butterfly species observed in the sanctuary to 263 species including 25 endemic to the Western Ghats.

Use of herbicides

The survey noted that large-scale use of herbicides in the plantations within the sanctuary was taking a heavy toll on the butterflies and other forms of life. Wildlife Warden of the sanctuary R. Lakshmi expressed concern over the use of herbicides in the sanctuary and said she would take a serious look into the issue.

Posted in Butterfly Farm |

Utility Proposes Butterfly Preserves in Work Deal

National Grid is proposing to create preserves to protect two federally listed butterflies as part of a work permit renewal application.

The Glens Falls Post-Star reports (http://bit.ly/uCKTaw ) that the federal permit would protect the utility from penalties if workers accidently harm endangered Karner blue or at-risk frosted elfin butterflies while performing routine maintenance activities.

Under its agreement with the Fish and Wildlife Service, the company would create a 5-acre sanctuary in Queensbury and a 23-acre preserve in Albany next to the Pine Bush Preserve.

Other mitigation efforts include educating employees, restricting mowing and herbicides, and working with police to keep all-terrain vehicle riders out of sensitive areas.

The Fish and Wildlife Service is taking public comments on National Grid’s proposal until Dec. 19.

Posted in Butterfly Farm |

Wildfire Restoration Work Aims to Help Bees, Butterflies

Karl Christians, a state conservation district specialist, plunged his arms elbow deep into a special concoction of grass and flower seeds to stir up the batch before applying the mixture with a spreader attached to his four-wheeler.

Karl Christians, of the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, seeds grass and plants that attract native pollinators on fire breaks at the site of the Stump Gulch fire near Columbus. Karl Christians, of the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, seeds grass and plants that attract native pollinators on fire breaks at the site of the Stump Gulch fire near Columbus.

Christians then drove along a fire line that had been cut to fight the 2010 Stump Gulch fire north of Columbus. As the spreader threw the mixture across the swath of line, Christians stopped and adjusted the spreader to get just the right amount of seed application.

He was getting started Thursday morning on seeding about six miles of the 20 miles of lines on the Stump Gulch fire. Weather conditions, early snow and scheduling conflicts prevented re-seeding last year.

In addition to native grasses of slender, blue bunch and thickspike wheat grasses and green needle, Christians added a coffee-can scoop of native purple prairie clover, prairie coneflower, western yarrow, flax and ladak alfalfa seeds as a pollinator mix.

The pollinator seeds are for a variety of native wildflowers and grasses intended to bloom through out the growing season and to attract bees, butterflies, moths and other pollinators that are in decline.

“We just thought we would try it. We’re going to get some flowering plants in here,” Christians said.

The Stump Gulch fire burned about 10,000 acres of mostly private land that has grassy hills, ponderosa pine trees and juniper.

The Stump Gulch fire and the Canyon Creek fire, which burned about 2,560 acres near Laurel in September, are pilot projects for the pollinator mix in wildland restoration work by the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation.

The DNRC rehabilitates lands burned by wildfire not only to obliterate dozer-cut fire lines but also to reduce erosion and control weeds and to give native plants a strong foot hold, said Ray Beck, administrator of DNRC’s Conservation and Resource Development Division.

This year, the state also is using the rehab work to give a boost to Montana’s native pollinators, which are the bees, butterflies, moths and other species.

Pollinators worldwide are declining at an alarming rate, Beck said. In the U.S., domestic honey bees pollinate an estimated $15 billion worth of crops a year. In Montana, leaf-cutter bees pollinate alfalfa and are raised primarily to pollinate alfalfa for seed.

“Imagine living in a world without bees or other pollinators. It would be a world without flowers, fruit, most of the food we eat, a cup of coffee, even chocolate,” he said.

The DNRC, working with county conservation districts and the federal Natural Resource Conservation Service and landowners, is trying to help reverse pollinator decline, Beck said.

DNRC employees reseeded the Canyon Creek fire recently with the pollinator mix.

The pollinator mix came from Circle S Seeds of Montana in Three Forks.

“We are somewhat limited in Montana with the species that grow in this clime and seed availability,” Beck said.

The DNRC bought 91 pounds of pollinator mix for $1,500 and is using a little more than a pound an acre, Christians said.

Whether including pollinator mix will become a regular part of fire reseeding has not yet been decided.

“We’re just trying it out. We’ll see. Budgets are a big thing,” Christians said.

Karl Christians, a state conservation district specialist, plunged his arms elbow deep into a special concoction of grass and flower seeds to stir up the batch before applying the mixture with a spreader attached to his four-wheeler.

Christians then drove along a fire line that had been cut to fight the 2010 Stump Gulch fire north of Columbus. As the spreader threw the mixture across the swath of line, Christians stopped and adjusted the spreader to get just the right amount of seed application.

He was getting started Thursday morning on seeding about six miles of the 20 miles of lines on the Stump Gulch fire. Weather conditions, early snow and scheduling conflicts prevented re-seeding last year.

In addition to native grasses of slender, blue bunch and thickspike wheat grasses and green needle, Christians added a coffee-can scoop of native purple prairie clover, prairie coneflower, western yarrow, flax and ladak alfalfa seeds as a pollinator mix.

The pollinator seeds are for a variety of native wildflowers and grasses intended to bloom through out the growing season and to attract bees, butterflies, moths and other pollinators that are in decline.

“We just thought we would try it. We’re going to get some flowering plants in here,” Christians said.

The Stump Gulch fire burned about 10,000 acres of mostly private land that has grassy hills, ponderosa pine trees and juniper.

The Stump Gulch fire and the Canyon Creek fire, which burned about 2,560 acres near Laurel in September, are pilot projects for the pollinator mix in wildland restoration work by the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation.

The DNRC rehabilitates lands burned by wildfire not only to obliterate dozer-cut fire lines but also to reduce erosion and control weeds and to give native plants a strong foot hold, said Ray Beck, administrator of DNRC’s Conservation and Resource Development Division.

This year, the state also is using the rehab work to give a boost to Montana’s native pollinators, which are the bees, butterflies, moths and other species.

Pollinators worldwide are declining at an alarming rate, Beck said. In the U.S., domestic honey bees pollinate an estimated $15 billion worth of crops a year. In Montana, leaf-cutter bees pollinate alfalfa and are raised primarily to pollinate alfalfa for seed.

“Imagine living in a world without bees or other pollinators. It would be a world without flowers, fruit, most of the food we eat, a cup of coffee, even chocolate,” he said.

The DNRC, working with county conservation districts and the federal Natural Resource Conservation Service and landowners, is trying to help reverse pollinator decline, Beck said.

DNRC employees reseeded the Canyon Creek fire recently with the pollinator mix.

The pollinator mix came from Circle S Seeds of Montana in Three Forks.

“We are somewhat limited in Montana with the species that grow in this clime and seed availability,” Beck said.

The DNRC bought 91 pounds of pollinator mix for $1,500 and is using a little more than a pound an acre, Christians said.

Whether including pollinator mix will become a regular part of fire reseeding has not yet been decided.

“We’re just trying it out. We’ll see. Budgets are a big thing,” Christians said.

SOURCE

Posted in Butterfly Farm |