Welcome to the island of St Martin. As I said in my post Our 3 Favorite Beaches of Philipsburg, Saint Martin, we had a timeshare in St Martin and vacationed here a few times. I always loved visiting this beautiful area and one of the highlights was the Butterfly Farm – La Ferme des Papillons. It is absolutely amazing and I love all the colorful butterflies. Some much in fact, that I brought home souvenirs for myself and my mom because I couldn’t resist. 🙂 Read below this post for an update about the butterfly farm in St. Martin.
Update: The butterfly Farm was destroyed during Hurricane Irma in 2017. All this information was from a trip we took in 1999 and 2001. They are working on rebuilding but no ETA as of now on when that will happen. Still wanted to share as this was a great place to visit.
I have always liked butterflies so I was very excited to visit their farm. Within each large meshed enclosure you can see hundreds of real exotic butterflies flying freely, a beautiful display of the most spectacular species from all over the world. Who wouldn’t be excited?
They have hundreds of exotic butterflies from all around the world, South America, southeast Asia, the Philippines, Australia, China, Africa, Malaya and more. As you walk through the lush tropical rain forest amidst flowers and trees, ponds, and a trickling waterfall, there are butterflies flying overhead and all around you in their own natural paradise. It is amazing.
To really get the feel of the farm and learn more about butterflies, you should definitely take the tour, which only takes about 15-20 minutes. We did the first time we went, and it was really informative. On the tour, the guide explains the evolutionary cycle from microscopic eggs to strange and exotic caterpillars, pupae resembling exquisite designer jewelry. You can also witness all stages of their life cycle from a tiny little egg to curious caterpillar and jewel-like pupa.
They state that early in the morning is the best opportunity to see a butterfly emerging from its pupa and watch newborn butterflies take their first flight! If you want to handle the butterflies and caterpillars our guides will be happy to show you how to do so without damaging these fragile creatures. Such a treat!
The guide also suggested wearing bright colors (which we didn’t do the first time sadly) and to wear a citrus perfume if you want the butterflies to land on you. I guess they are attracted by the sight and smell. Thought that was interesting.
Here are some more interesting facts about butterflies:
- A butterfly is a type of insect, and belongs to the order of insects called Lepidoptera, which means “scaly wings”
- The average life of a butterfly is around two weeks. Some species only live a day or two and other species are capable of living around nine months.
- Butterflies are generally brightly-colored while moths are generally drab.
- Almost all caterpillars eat plant materials. Most eat leaves, but some eat seeds, seedpods, or flowers.
- At night or during bad weather, butterflies will usually hang from the undersides of leaves, or crawl into crevices between rocks or other objects, and sleep.
- Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing (Ornithoptera alexandrae), is the largest butterfly with a wingspan of 11-1/8 inches (280 mm). The smallest butterfly is the Pygmy Blue (Brephidium exilis), which is found in the southern United States. Its wingspan is ½ inch (15 mm).
We had a great time wandering around and looking at all the beautiful butterflies, but I will also tell you it was very hot when we were there in May and June, so bring lots of water with you. I definitely needed it. Other than that, just take your time, sit and relax, and watch these beautiful animals fly all around you. I was in heaven. Hope you enjoyed our visit and pictures for the La Ferme des Papillons in St. Martin. I will come back and update you with more information as it comes out. In the meantime, you can check out their website and information about the location in Aruba. Happy travels.
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2 thoughts on “Butterflies Everywhere at the Butterfly Farm in St. Martin”
Samantha, what a shame (but not a surprise) that this unique venue was destroyed by a hurricane. In Denver, I once visited The Butterfly Pavillion with some family members. My mother, the shortest of us, had a short mix of light-brown and white hairs. Fortunately for the Pavillion, they had well-designed double doors, to allow you to shoo butterflies back into the main room, if they had attached to your clothing. There was a type of 1″ light brown and white butterfly that decided my Mom’s hair was wonderful, and we spent MINUTES gently shooing them out of her hair before we went through the second pair of doors.
I do hope that this preserve is restored.. it is always so joyous and delightful to watch butterflies and calming at the same time.. Your photographs are beautiful.. We recently went to the monarch butterfly grove at Pismo Beach in California and it was an amazing experience