Ever wondered how on earth we manage to feed over 1500 tropical butterflies a day? Pondered over what plant a Cairns Birdwing Butterfly eats or how much a Hercules Moth caterpillar consumes? Our food plant walk is here to provide answers to all your buzzing, fluttering questions…
The food plant walk at the Australian Butterfly Sanctuary is a twenty minute educational guided walk around our grounds displaying various caterpillar host food plants. All of these plants are grown on site and are used by our laboratory staff to feed our caterpillars.
Fun Fast Food Facts
- We produce around 20,000 butterfly pupa per year.
- We grow 25 species of food plant to breed around 20 species of local butterflies.
- Our Cairns Birdwing Caterpillars need 100 metres of vine per week!
- We have 3 acres of land to cultivate our food plants on site.
- 20 silkmoth caterpillars will eat one whole Mulberry plant!
- We collect around 50 to 100 litres of plant material daily
Food Plants To Discover
Aristolochia tagala – Cairns Birdwing
Melicope elleryana – Ulysses Butterfly
Citrus trees (lemon, lime grapefruit) – Orchard, Ambrax, Fuscus and Dainty Swallowtail Butterflies
Adenia heterophylla – Red Lacewing, Orange lacewing and Cruiser Butterflies
Asytasia gangetica – Common Eggfly, Blue Banded Eggfly butterflies
Mulberry trees – Silk moths
Bleeding Heart tree – Hercules moths
The Plant Walk is included in your admission! Ask our friendly staff for times when you visit! Book online now!
Please note: This guided walk has uneven paths and is unsuitable for prams, wheelchairs and walking aids. Flat enclosed shoes are recommended. Children must be supervised. Participants must follow the guide’s instructions at all times.