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Butterfly Pavilion's Pollinator Place is now closed. The space will reopen on Friday, May 3rd as our new Origins: Building Life exhibit!

This January, Butterfly Pavilion Releases Hundreds of One of the World’s Largest and Most Beautiful Butterflies – The Birdwing

“Beauty of the Birdwing” Special Engagement Offers a Rare Opportunity to Walk Among these Stunning Butterflies While Helping Support their Protection


Media contact: Jennifer Quermann, (703) 477-0668,

Westminster, CO – January 3, 29, 2022 – To celebrate the new year, and one of the most special butterfly species, Butterfly Pavilion invites visitors to “Beauty of the Birdwing”, January 7 – 31, to immerse themselves among hundreds of beautiful, big, and spectacular Birdwing butterflies, while learning more about these vulnerable invertebrates and how to help protect them. The Common Green Birdwing (Ornithoptera priamus) is among the largest butterflies in the world, with an astonishing wingspan of up to one foot in length. They are found in the tropics of Southeast Asia and Australasia – and now are featured in Butterfly Pavilion’s conservatory, allowing guests a rare experience to observe them up-close in glorious flight.

“These butterflies will have been in their chrysalis form for nearly a month, so when they emerge and are released into our conservatory it is an exciting and wonderous sight for returning and new visitors to witness,” says Shiran Hershcovich, Lepidopterist Manager at Butterfly Pavilion. “The event is both engaging and educational providing an opportunity to see these butterflies up close while learning more about them and their need for protection.”

They have aposematic coloration, which means their bright colors serve as a visible warning to predators of their toxicity. In nature, their unusually large size and bright coloration protect them from predators, but not from their most feared predator of all – human poachers. Their populations face many dangers like habitat loss and illegal trade. People are drawn to their rarity and their stunning colors, making them highly sought after as part of the illegal trade industry.

Illegal trade is a multi-billion-dollar business that often shows up in the public eye with stories of pet tigers or illegal poaching of elephants for their ivory tusks. However, illegal trade has devastating effects on invertebrates as well and can push them toward extinction. All species of birdwing butterflies are protected under CITES, an international agreement that aims to ensure that the international trade of vulnerable animals does not threaten their survival. However, this is not enough to protect them from illegal poachers who know these butterflies fetch a high price in the collector’s underground economy.

These Birdwings, as with all our invertebrates, are always sourced from sustainable butterfly suppliers that our organization works with as part of our conservation initiatives. “Our butterfly suppliers are not just vendors, but our conservation partners around the world”, says Hershcovich. “By visiting Butterfly Pavilion, beyond experiencing the Birdwings, you are supporting sustainable wildlife-based economies like butterfly farms that help combat illegal trade, as well as our global field conservation projects”.

Butterfly Pavilion works hard to educate the public about how invertebrates are important for our survival, yet we need to advocate for theirs. Invertebrates make up most of the animal kingdom, and this biodiversity contributes to our quality of life in unexpected ways – our food supply, medicine products, and healthy ecosystems all depend on invertebrates. Events such as Beauty of the Birdwing help support Butterfly Pavilion’s essential efforts to protect the future of invertebrate populations in Colorado and around the world.

Beauty of the Birdwings Admission

January 7 – 31, 2021

9:00AM – 5:00PM every day!

Non-Member: Adult – $14.50 • Senior – $12.50 • Child – $9.50

Members: Free admission

Special Beauty of the Birdwing ticket packs can save you up to $14.00 off admission and include up to two custom Birdwing stickers per pack!

To learn more and purchase tickets, visit:

About Butterfly Pavilion

Butterfly Pavilion has been part of the Colorado community since 1995 and is the first Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA)-accredited, stand-alone, non-profit invertebrate zoo in the world, currently occupying a 30,000-square foot facility situated on an 11-acre campus provided by the City of Westminster, Colorado. Butterfly Pavilion’s mission is to foster an appreciation of butterflies and other invertebrates while educating the public about the need for conservation of threatened habitats in the tropics and around the world.

Beyond Colorado and the United States, Butterfly Pavilion conservationists are doing important invertebrate research projects around the world from Mongolia and Saudi Arabia to Peru and Indonesia. Closer to home, a new Butterfly Pavilion Baseline development will open in Broomfield, Colorado in 2025 setting the global standard for invertebrate science and conservation. The $55M, 81,000-square-foot facility will include greatly expanded guest experiences, world-class research labs, and a much larger zoological facility. Learn more at