Butterfly Park

Kid's Fun | Written By, NOW! BALI |

It’s getting harder and harder to catch a glimpse of a butterfly in the city.  The lack of trees, flowers and plants is one obvious reason behind the decline of the butterfly population in Bali’s towns.  Some children are introduced to butterflies through books or other media.  In the old days we ran around chasing butterflies and trying to catch them.  Nowadays, our children probably have a broader knowledge about these unique creatures, but have they ever seen them fluttering amongst the flower beds or felt one gently landing on their hand? To get a close encounter with butterflies, take your children to visit Bali Butterfly Park in Wanasari Village, Tabanan.  The 40 acre park, which was established in 1996, has recently opened a special plantation to grow the vegetation and shrubs eaten by caterpillars. There are 15 butterfly species in the park: Ornitoptera priamus, Troides Helena, Papilio perantus, Papilio memnon, Papilio ambrax, Papilio polites, Papilio helenus, Vindula dejoune, Chetosia hypsea, Euplea paenareta, Euplea Corrina, Idea blancardi, Pacliota aristolocia, Dolescalia bisaltidae, and Kupu-Kupu Barong which is actually a moth.

TEXT AND Photos by Kartika D. suardana

It’s getting harder and harder to catch a glimpse of a butterfly in the city.  The lack of trees, flowers and plants is one obvious reason behind the decline of the butterfly population in Bali’s towns.  Some children are introduced to butterflies through books or other media.  In the old days we ran around chasing butterflies and trying to catch them.  Nowadays, our children probably have a broader knowledge about these unique creatures, but have they ever seen them fluttering amongst the flower beds or felt one gently landing on their hand?

To get a close encounter with butterflies, take your children to visit Bali Butterfly Park in Wanasari Village, Tabanan.  The 40 acre park, which was established in 1996, has recently opened a special plantation to grow the vegetation and shrubs eaten by caterpillars. There are 15 butterfly species in the park: Ornitoptera priamus, Troides Helena, Papilio perantus, Papilio memnon, Papilio ambrax, Papilio polites, Papilio helenus, Vindula dejoune, Chetosia hypsea, Euplea paenareta, Euplea Corrina, Idea blancardi, Pacliota aristolocia, Dolescalia bisaltidae, and Kupu-Kupu Barong which is actually a moth.

The pupas of these 15 species are brought to Bali by airplane from butterfly farms in Kalimantan (Borneo), Papua, Java, Sulawesi (Celebes), and Maluku (Mollucas).  In the park, the pupas hang in racks at a building surrounded with a narrow and shallow waterway to avoid ants reaching the pupas so they can metamorphose safely.  Larva, caterpillar, pupa and butterflies are all very sensitive to chemical products and pesticides. Only three hours after completing the transformation and becoming a butterfly, this diurnal insect reaches maturity and can start the mating process. You can witness these processes in the peaceful ambiance of the park.

After the mating process, the butterflies are set free in the park. In this period, grasshoppers are their main predators in their short lives (maximum a month).  The park’s ranger maintains the park and controls pests and grasshoppers in a traditional, eco-friendly way. You can observe their unique grasshopper collection in glass boxes in an open-air building in the middle part of the park.  Perhaps some of them were caught that day by the park ranger. 

 

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NOW! BALI

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