At the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, there’s a Living Conservatory where tropical plants, turtles, tarantulas, a snake, butterflies, and a two-toed sloth all live under the museum’s care. And the exhibit is free to visitors.
To film the conservatory butterflies as they emerged from their chrysalises, Dr. Adrian Smith of the Ant Lab YouTube channel set up a time-lapse camera on a few different species. Curator Andy Kauffman introduces the exhibit:
“As the butterflies come in, we pin them up to these strips and hang them inside of a climate-controlled emergence chamber. So we get about 300 butterflies every other week shipped to the conservatory from Costa Rica, which the public can view from the outside.”
Dr. Smith then filmed six of these tropical butterfly species with slow-motion cameras as they took off flying.
Featured species in order of appearance include an owl butterfly (Caligo eurilochus), above, a male Blue-frosted Banner (Catonephele numilia), a Heliconious Longwing (Heliconius hecale), the iconic Monarch (Danaus plexippus), two Heliconious Longwings (Heliconius Melpomene and Heliconius hecale), two stunning Blue Morphos (Morpho peleides), below, a Malachite (Siproeta stelenes), and a Cattleheart (Parides arcas).
And find more videos from Smith on this site. Related butterfly videos on TKSST:
• Blue morpho butterflies emerge from their chrysalises
• What happens to a caterpillar inside its chrysalis?
• Monarch Butterflies Get Tiny Radio Trackers
• Zoom into a Blue Morpho Butterfly
• Tim Wong and California’s Pipevine Swallowtail butterflies
• The Green Dragontail Butterfly in slow motion