Stratford Butterfly Farm opens new ‘rainforest’ exhibition featuring a Crocodile!
The Stratford-upon-Avon Butterfly Farm is to open a brand-new unique exhibition entitled ‘Rainforest Realm’ featuring a Spectacled Caiman and other animals that originate from the rainforests of Central America!
The magnificent male Caiman would normally live in and around ‘cenotes’, natural sinkholes formed by the collapse of limestone that fill up with ground water. Caimans are oportunist hunters, feeding on a variety of prey including crabs, fish, small mammals and invertebrates. Also planned to be on display in ‘Rainforest Realm’ will be an Emerald Tree Boa Snake, 10 endangered Orange Blackfoot Dart Frogs, a Basilisk Lizard, 2 Baby Yellow Spotted Amazon River Turtles and a Oustalets Chameleon from Madagascar.
At the heart of the exhibition is a replicated ‘cenote’, complete with a water cascade and a deep and shallow pool. The ancient Maya sourced water from the cenotes which were respected as sacred places, symbolic of both life and death. The creatures found in and around a cenote include frogs, iguanas, and crocodiles.
38 years ago, the owner of Stratford Butterfly Farm, Clive Farrell, had a dream to create an attraction that would introduce visitors to the wonderment of butterflies. The Butterfly Farm opened to the public in 1985 and has since welcomed over 4 million visitors. In 1991 Clive, and his partner Ray Harberd, created the Fallen Stones Butterfly Farm in Southern Belize, named after the nearby site of ancient Maya ruins, Lubaantun – the place of the fallen stones. This connection between the Maya and Stratford Butterfly Farm is the inspiration behind the new exhibition ‘Rainforest Realm’. Clive will officially open the exhibition at 10am on Friday 31 March with specially invited guests. The butterfly farm will then be open from 10:30am to the public.
Jane Kendrick, Marketing Manager at Stratford Butterfly Farm said, “We are delighted to open this exciting new exhibition which will enhance our visitor experience. At present no other attraction in the UK or Europe are housing their reptiles in a cenote so this is a one-of-a-kind display. The project has taken 14 months to complete and will enable our visitors to see this beautiful predator in a fun and safe environment”.
The Butterfly Farm will host several activities for the Easter Holidays from 1 to 16 April including the chance to visit the new exhibition, plus Mini-Beast Handling Sessions, demonstrations in the Discovery Zone and a competition to win family entrance tickets to the Butterfly Farm. Holt Hall Apiary’s beekeeper Matthew Ingram will be in the Discovery Zone along with his bees on Wednesday 12 April. Visitors will be able to interact and learn all about these wonderful pollinators.
To see hundreds of spectacular butterflies, insects, reptiles, and spiders visit the Butterfly Farm from 10am to 6pm, last entry 5.30pm. Open every day of the week except Christmas Day. For more information including purchasing gift vouchers, admission prices and group rates, please visit the website at www.butterflyfarm.co.uk or telephone on 01789 299288.
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