It’s all about the Egg at Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm! During the Easter holidays from 6-28 April. Visitors can discover the freshly laid eggs from tropical Butterflies and Moths and see the Caterpillars that have hatched out of them and the pupae they turn into. Within the Emerging Case visitors may even see a butterfly hatch from its pupa!
Visitors can also discover the fascinating connection that Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm has to the rainforests of Belize and the ancient Maya civilisation. Their artefacts have been replicated and are on display throughout the Farm. The Maya were skilled at growing crops such as maize, chili pepper, beans and squash. Most importantly they discovered the cacao pod giving us the delights of delicious chocolate, with out which easter would not be the same!
In keeping with the Easter theme, within the Rainforest Flight Area you will find Chinese Painted Quail. A number of these small, ground dwelling birds have recently had their chicks hatch. These tiny fluffy chicks are a delight to see and we ask you to not pick them up and enjoy them from a distance.
Children and adults can also take part in the popular ‘Meet the Mini-Beast’ handling sessions which take place daily at *11.30am and 2.30pm throughout the holidays with the Education Team. * Times and frequency may vary and are subject to change. Visitors can hold creatures such as a giant African millipede, African land snail and a variety of stick insects.
NEW on display for the Easter Holidays are a couple of residents including a Dragon Headed Katydid, also known as Eumegalodon blanchardi. These ferocious looking creatures originate from the forests of Borneo in South East Asia and have huge chewing mouthparts for eating tough vegetation. The males and females are easy to tell apart as the female has a long sword like ovipositor which is used to lay eggs in the stems of banana plants.
The other new resident is an Orchid Mantis, also known as Hymenapus coronatus, which originates from Malaysia and Indonesia. These beautiful pink and white mantis have lobes on their legs that look like flower petals. Although this species does not live on orchids, it does look remarkably like a beautiful orchid flower.
And finally we have the immpressive Orb Web Spider, also known as Nephilia inaurata, originating from Southern Africa. Unusually this spider is not displayed behind the safety of glass! This particular spider can be found in Minibeast Metropolis in a large hoop suspended from the ceiling. The spider is kept behind a protective barrier and will not leave her hoop.
Orb web spiders make the classic type of webs frequently seen in gardens, fields and forests. They can measure a metre wide - plenty of space to trap hapless insects in the sticky silk that is so strong it can even catch birds and bats!