It's said that 'opposites attract', but, even then, they seem like an odd coupling. Butterflies and Galapagos tortoises have moved into a luxury new home together in Jersey Zoo.
The animal conservation park has opened a new Butterfly House, next to the Organic Showcase, giving the winged and shelled friends a new space full of lush vegetation.
Visitors will get to walk through swathes of tropical butterflies, immersing themselves in the jewel colours of exotic plants in the new house.
The Butterfly House will also incorporate a pupae chamber where hatching butterflies will first stretch their wings before being released into the larger house. A wild flower garden will also be created outside to attract native invertebrates.
Pictured: The new Butterfly House is located next to next to the Organic Showcase.
Commenting on the new exhibit Dr Lesley Dickie, Durrell’s CEO, said: “We really want to make the zoo a more immersive experience and bring people and animals closer together.
"I can’t wait to see visitors’ reactions as they experience these beautiful animals up close. One of our key objectives is connecting people to nature and this walk-through exhibit will help us achieve that.”
The development of the new enclosure was supported by the Channel Islands Lottery through the Association of Jersey Charities, the Gardiens of the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust and the Domaine des Vaux Opera Festival. The upcoming Durrell Dash road race, taking place on 4 November 2018, will help raise funds to support the ongoing costs of this new exhibit.
Staff say the new butterfly chamber's opening is just one of many buzzing activities going on at the Zoo at the moment, with a spooktacular pre-Halloween line-up for this weekend.
Anyone who visits after dark today is in with a chance of spotting the ghouls and ghosts that haunt the grounds after the animals have gone to sleep. There'll be crafts and activities to give everyone some 'Boo at the Zoo'.
Also starting from 17:00 today, and again on Wednesday, visitors will get to walk the Trick or Treat Trail, spied by nocturnal eyes, to collect stamps in exchange of Halloween treats. Magician Finlay Ormsby will be showing the best of his mischievous wizardry at the Durrell Discovery Centre fat 18:00 and 19:00.
If brave enough to do so, visitors aged 13 and over will be able to wander through the Durrell Discovery Centre's haunted maze dark and its extinction Graveyard to learn about species from the past. Fancy dress is highly encouraged for the little monsters and their parents.
(Butterfly pictures by Freya Clark)
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