Visit Butterflies LIVE!
Butterflies LIVE! has reopened!
Please note that for the first few days there will be fewer butterflies in the exhibit than normal. This is because we sent most of the butterflies to the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History live butterfly exhibit and we are currently raising new butterflies to repopulate our exhibit.
April 15 – Oct. 9, 2016
Daily 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Experience the wonderful world of butterflies! Tropical beauties — fascinating and showy — transform the Conservatory’s North Wing into a wonderland of vibrant colors, captivating sights and extraordinary discoveries. The exhibit is ever-changing, so every time you visit, you’re likely to see something new.
Butterflies LIVE! is an indoor exhibit filled with fun family activities for all ages. Get up close and personal as hundreds of tropical butterflies feed, flutter and take flight all around you. Explore their origins, preferred habitats and lifecycles. Photos are permitted, but we ask those taking photos to be respectful of other guests.
Purchase Tickets Online Now
Planning Your Visit With the Butterflies
Check out our Top 10 Tips for Visiting Butterflies LIVE! with Children.
Butterflies like to hitchhike! That’s why large objects (backpacks, oversized totes and pocketbooks) are discouraged inside the exhibit. There is a place to leave belongings inside the staffed entry, however, the Garden is not responsible for them.
For the same reason, strollers are discouraged inside the exhibit. There is a place to park strollers in front of the Conservatory. Wheelchairs are permitted.
Peek inside this special box in the display where native butterfly species will emerge from their chrysalides.
Butterfly Release Times:
Daily at 10 a.m. and Saturdays at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
Visit during these scheduled times to see newly emerged butterflies released into the exhibit. Please note the number of butterflies being released may range from several to a dozen.
Meet the Butterflies
We add new butterflies to our exhibit every day, so the butterflies flying in our exhibit on any given day changes. But here are a few of our favorite fluttering beauties that you are likely to meet.
Butterflies LIVE! in the Conservatory is only part of the fun. We’ve planted nectar and host plants for butterflies all over the Garden! Plus, join us for these other butterfly activities in the Garden.
Join us for fun family activities in the Children’s Garden where you can learn how to do the bee dance and participate in our Butterflies LIVE! KidQuest. Pick up a copy in the Visitor Center, or download and print your own KidQuest PDF.
Celebrate National Pollinators Week — June 20 – 26, 2016
A major initiative of the National Pollinator Partnership, National Pollinators Week recognizes the importance of pollinators to ecosystem health and agriculture in the United States.Learn More
See The Butterflies All Year & More!
See our Top Reasons to Become a Member Including Unlimited Visits to Butterflies LIVE!