THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A wide array of butterfly gardens, providing a natural habitat for the winged creatures, have been popping up in different parts of the state. This initiative by the state-run Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI) is aimed at delivering a conservation message. At the Vasantholsavam, the butterfly park is attracting huge crowds.
According to officials, these butterfly parks also act as environment-monitors. “More than 100 butterfly parks have been set up in schools and public places. The pollution levels of the particular area can be detected from the arrival of butterflies. The more number of butterflies indicate less pollution,” said A V Raghu, scientist, KFRI.
Discussions are also going on with the Tourism department to make the butterfly garden at Kanakakkunnu Palace premises a permanent facility.
“This is also an experiment to know whether the butterflies are able to survive in the city. It also aims at educating people that butterfly gardens can be set up in their own gardens and lawns,” said Raghu.
The garden is rich with more than thirty varieties of larval host plants and nectar plants. There are also a number of nectar species of plants.
“Nobody tries to determine why butterflies are dwindling from our locality," Raghu said. KFRI has also brought out a book with instructions and guidelines on how to set up a butterfly garden.