Thousands of butterflies come to the Valley - Tucson News Now

Thousands of butterflies come to the Valley


It's hot outside and while thousands of people have left the Valley for cooler weather, thousands of butterflies have moved in, just in time for summer.

A new attraction just opened up about a month ago in Scottsdale, called Butterfly Wonderland.

It is the largest butterfly pavilion in the country and the largest emergence gallery in the world.

If visitors stand in the gallery long enough they will witness butterflies and moths emerging from their chrysalis and cocoons.

Dayna Cooper, the curator from Butterfly Wonderland, said the butterflies start up in a tiny ball. It takes about five to 15 minutes for their wings to dry out. They are then collected and brought out to the conservatory.

The conservatory is filled with thousands of butterflies. Ninety percent of them are tropical and 10 percent are native.

"The first thing that people notice when they come in is the humidity and it feels ... rain forest-like," said Cooper.

"If you take your time and walk slowly through the exhibit you'll see the 36 to 50 different species," she added.

Visitors can also enjoy an ant display, a bee display and eight tanks of fresh water tropical fish.

There is also a stingray touch tank.

"I love it ... it was all slimy and I mean you have to be patient and put your fingers in there but other than that, it's really cool because I've never touched a stingray before," said Pauline Mojica, a first-time visitor.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

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