Butterflies released at Brookfield Zoo

May 28, 2010 3:37:19 PM PDT
They fly with rainbow colors on their wings and flutter in rhythm with the blinking of our eyes.

Hundreds of jerky-winged butterflies made their debut at a new exhibit at Brookfield Zoo Wednesday. They arrived by Air Express in a box from a butterfly farm in Naples, Florida. Inside the box were more boxes and insides those boxes were envelopes filled with live butterflies.

Fifth graders from Hollywood School each got a envelope and the chance to participate in the release.

"Pretty cool," said Garrett Javors, fifth grader, "It's like awesome."

"We've got about 400 to 450 butterflies that were shipped in to us today to initiate our exhibit. It's a really great opportunity for us to take the local schools and get them involved in the curriculum," said Jeff Mitchell, associated curator, Brookfield Zoo.

This Wings of Wonder exhibit opens Saturday for the summer and there is an extra charge of $4 for adults and $2 for children.

"I got, uh, a butterfly," said Will Tracy, fifth-grader. A monarch butterfly. "Oh, cool."

"It's really pretty. I've never seen a butterfly up close like this before. So it's really cool," said Elena Bowie, fifth-grader.

It seems we're all fascinated by butterflies from the time we're little kids until who knows when. But where does the name 'butterflies' come from? Does it come from flutterby or fluttersby? Well, no it really doesn't.

"Well, some people believe it comes from an Anglo-Saxon term. An Anglo-Saxon term called butter-flog which actually identified a yellow butterfly that was in their area," said Andre Copeland, Brookfield Zoo Interpretive Studies.

These butterflies will live only about two weeks but their descendants will carry on with a new population boom.


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