Butterfly garden developed by KFRI is an important achievement in the field of nature education. Butterflies are reared in the laboratory and released into semi-natural enclosure where their food plants are grown. Practically a large number of butterflies captivate the eyes of the visitors in the background of which they receive elucidative lessons on ecology, environment, biodiversity, food web and biological balance.
KFRI has two butterfly gardens; one in its main campus at Peechi and another in the Subcentre campus at Nilambur. Some of the butterflies that can generally be seen in the garden include lemon butterfly (Papilio demoleus), southern birdwing (Troides minos), common rose (Pachliopta aristolochiae), light blue tiger (Tirumala limniace), dark blue tiger (Tirumala septentrionis) and common crow (Euploea core). Plants that are raised in the garden for forage by butterflies include Clerodendrum paniculatum, Crotalaria pallida, Crotalaria retusa, Cuphea hyssopifolia, Gardenia sp., Gloriosa superba, Heliotropium keralense, Hibiscus spp., Impatiens sp., Ixora spp., Jasminum spp., Jatropa spp., Lantana spp. Plants such as Aristolochia indica, Thottea siliquosa, Tylophora indica, Asclepias sp., Carissa carandus, Ruta graveolens, Aegle marmelos, Cassia spp., Albizzia spp., Kalanchoe spp., Musaenda luteosa, Citrus spp. and Murraya koenigii are introduced as larval host plants to sustain various butterflies in the garden.
KFRI continues to provide technical advice for establishing of small and big butterfly parks
Contact: Forest Entomology,
Kerala Forest Research Institute,
Peechi- 680 653, India.