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RMNP Butterflies: West of the Divide

Aug 17, 2018

Butterflies fly in every life zone of Rocky Mountain National Park. This event will begin with an indoor introduction to basic butterfly biology, butterfly behavior, and butterfly diversity. In the field, we will visit several different habitats on the west side of the Park to search for late summer species, such as Rocky Mountain parnassian, Scudder’s sulphur, silver-bordered fritillary, mourning cloak and dark wood-nymph. We will learn to ID these species and also discuss their life histories, ecology, host-plant associations and conservation concerns, including the impact of loss of lodgepole pine stands to bark beetles. The program will focus on butterfly observation through binoculars and digital photography; however, the guide will have a net-and-release permit to allow participants a close-up look at a variety of species.