Butterflies at Albuquerque Botanic Gardens

PNM Butterfly Pavilion

Butterfly at Rio Grande Botanic Gardens
Photo © Aileen O'Catherine

The Albuquerque Botanic Gardens feature butterflies every year at the PNM Butterfly Pavilion.

The butterfly exhibit at the Albuquerque Botanic Garden appeals to everyone. Visitors to the PNM Butterfly Pavilion will see hundreds of butterflies and the nectar plants they feed upon inside a large, enclosed structure. The lush habitat is a seasonal home for 25 species of butterflies. Visitors can also see the hatchery or brooder room, where chrysalides hatch out to become butterflies.

The PNM Butterfly Pavilion is from late May through early fall. For 2016, it will open Friday, July 1 and close in early October (weather permitting). The exhibit is included as part of the Botanic Garden, and open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the Botanic Garden is open until 6 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays, Memorial Day, July 4 and Labor Day.

Expect to see swallowtails, monarchs, blue winds, erato longwings, banded oranges and zebra longwings. The Pavilion features several hundred North American butterflies.

Tropical butterflies have been added to the population. The blue morphos has a wing span of up to eight inches and is deep blue with black wing edges. You'll also find the red and yellow striped postman and the cryptic owl butterfly. More than 20 new species of tropical butterflies and moths will be in the exhibit.

Butterflies feed on nectar, and the pavilion contains nectar feeders, fruit plates, hanging bananas and many flowers. There are thousands of nectar plants and a large Brugmansia tree with fragrant trumpet flowers. Water is available at a stream which flows through the center of the exhibit.

Photography is a popular pastime in the exhibit, in addition to finding different kinds of butterflies. Information on the butterflies can be found at the Pavilion, as well as information on how to attract butterflies to your home garden.

Take a photo walk through of the Botanic Gardens Childrens' Garden.

Find out more about the Butterfly Pavilion.