Butterfly Park, Chandigarh is spread over an area of 7 acres of land meticulously landscaping properly maintained with verities of trees and shrubs to create perfect habitat for butterflies. There were around 35 species of butterflies in the begging but at present there are about 100 species which have been clicked and documented by me so far. It is open from 9 AM to 5 AM with a break from 12 noon to 3 PM for all the seven days a week. Best time to visit park is from 9 to 12 and 3 to 5 P.M.
Butterfly Park in sector-26, Chandigarh was set up by Sh.Santosh Kumar IFS, CCF, Department of Forests and Wildlife, Chandigarh was finally inaugurated by Sh. K.K.Sharma IAS, the then advisor to Chandigarh Administrator, U.T. Chandigarh on 21st March, 2012. Now Sh.Dabendra Dalai, IFS, CCF has taken over and taking keen interest to develop this Park,
The Park has following host plants:-
Big plants:-24 types of Big plants like:-
Mango,Chikku,Lichhi,Jamun,Jackfruit,Ashoka,Banyan,Lemon,Gular,Nashpatti,Lukat,Neem,Aanar,SilverOak,Galgal,Mosammi,Kapoor,Amaltas,AaluBukhara,Aadu,Kinnu, Bottle Brush,Shehtoot and Berri.
Small plants:-Mayur Pankhi,Varities of Palm,Papaya, Banana,Lantana, Blood flower,Aak,Kari Patta,Arind and many more.
I am working on research work of Butterflies since 2007 when there were hardly 35 species seen in the butterfly park but during 12 years I clicked 100 species in Chandigarh. At present all the 100 species mark their presence in the Butterfly Park. I am also Administrator of Forest Department Facebook Page “Butterflies of Chandigarh” On my suggestion following changes have been made:-
Mudpuddling:- Two special bed have been created for mudpuddling of butterflies. The beds are provided dunk, animal urine, sentha namak, gum and other required minerals to facilitate the male butterflies.
Artificial Nectar:- A part from natural nectar from flowers we provide them Overripe fruits available during the session and sugar solution. This system had a great response from the butterflies. Now, one can see number of butterflies and especially those species which never visited Park before. Many species like Orange Oak Leaf, Anomalous Nawab, Black Rajah, Blue Admiral and Commander have started breeding.
Glass and Green House:- Glass house have been constructed for breeding of Butterflies. Recently, a green house has been set up for breeding of butterflies.
Nursery:- Butterfly Park has recently set up its own organic nursery of host plants and nectar plants within the Park to provide seasonal flowers and plant for the butterflies.
Maintain proper moisture:- Water body in the Park plays a great role in maintaining proper moisture. In addition to this there are two water flow fountains in the park and sprinkling of water in the glass and green house have been provided. Regular watering the plants, lawns and flower beds are being done.
Interpretation Centre:- An Interpretation Centre is being set up for educational purpose. Just right side of the entry gate beautiful picture frames of Butterflies have been on display along with boards of butterfly pictures with Common Names and Scientific Names and also host plants and life cycle of butterflies.
Public Convenience Facility.- Toilet is also under construction on the right side of the entry gate.
Amazing facts about Butterflies
1. Butterfly wings are transparent.
2. Butterflies taste with their feet.
3. Butterflies live on an all-liquid diet. A butterfly cannot live on sugar or flower nectar alone. It needs minerals, too. To supplement its diet of nectar, a butterfly will occasionally sip from mud puddles which are rich in minerals and salts and also gaining sustenance from tree sap, rotting animal matter, overripe fruits and other organic material but butterfly caterpillars almost all eat its host plant.
4. A butterfly must assemble its proboscis as soon as it emerges from the chrysalis because its mouth is in two pieces.
5. Butterflies can't fly in cold. Being cold blooded animal they are able to fly on acquiring 85ºF temperature.
6. A newly emerged butterfly can't fly. The butterfly must immediately pump body fluid through its wing veins to expand them.
7. The life span of butterflies varies from species to species from 2-4 weeks to 9 months. Painted Lady butterfly can live up to 12 months.
8. Butterflies are nearsighted. Butterfly eyesight is quite good from 10-12 feet, but they can see and discriminate a lot of colors. A butterfly sees you through its 12,000 eyes.
9. More than 17, 000 species of butterflies are found all over the world. India is home to about 1500 species of butterflies which constitute 65% of total Indian fauna. The largest butterfly with a wing span of 190mm is the Southern Bird wing and the tiniest is the smallest butterfly Grass Jewel with a 15mm wingspan and found in Chandigarh. About 100 species have been recorded in Chandigarh.
10 Butterflies employ all kinds of tricks to keep from being eaten. Mostly bright colored insects often pack a toxic punch if eaten, so predators learn to avoid them. A butterfly's rich color can act as camouflage.
19 Butterflies have migration tendencies Monarch Butterfly migrates from Canada to Maxico and California covering distance to 3000 miles to south Mexico. In India Crimson Rose Butterfly can travel all the way can travels to Sri Lanka covering 2000 miles over the sea from Rameswaram.
20 Butterflies have six jointed legs and three body parts: the head, the thorax and the abdomen. The wings are attached to the thorax and they also have a pair of antenna.
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