butterfly  Smithsonian staff are all aflutter (pun intended) about the new Butterfly Pavilion at the National Museum of Natural History.  We’re really excited about sharing this amazing new space with Affiliates this summer at the conference.  

Officially titled “Butterflies and Plants: Partners in Evolution,” the accompanying exhibition on co-evolution paves the way for the lush tropical experience that is the pavilion itself.  Museum staff provide a handy pictorial guide to the butterflies inside, and it’s very easy for visitors to get up close and personal… often, a butterfly will land on a shoulder or hand!  More importantly, visitors can see the interrelationship between the insects and plants, observing butterflies’ & their long tongues (proboscis) sucking out nectar or juice from the pieces of fruit available, before going on to pollinate other plants.     

The butterflies arrive in Washington in their cocoons (sorry, chrysalides) from farms around the world, and are displayed in a case inside the pavilion.  Watching them emerge is another cool part of the experience, as is the inspection all visitors go through upon leaving, to make sure no “hitchhikers” leave the space.  It’s sure to be a not-to-be-missed Washington experience, so sign up now!  or, click here for more pics.  Enjoy! 

Interior of pavilion    Closeup    Blue butterfly       


4 replies
  1. Marilyn Aber
    Marilyn Aber says:

    2 posted images are ones I supplied to the SI. Could you please add my name as the photographer for the monarch on yellow and the frittlary on milkweed. Thank you, Mka

    • Elizabeth Bugbee
      Elizabeth Bugbee says:

      Hi Marilyn-

      Please let us know how you would like the photos credited and we will make sure to update. Thank you for catching that!

  2. Kierra
    Kierra says:

    – my name is kierra and i like the picture of the butterfly so may i use it for a english project on my blog. This picture will be viewed by my teacher and my fellow classmates. So if you can just please email me i would like to know as soon as possible, Thank you

    signed Kierra

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