Bribie Island Butterfly House
A delightful discovery for all ages, the Bribie Island Butterfly House is a not-for-profit, community project that provides a peaceful sanctuary that is good for the soul of both visitors and inhabitants.
Open since 2015, thanks to the vision of Ray Archer and wife, Delphine, the habitat hosts an active and well-tended breeding laboratory and a divine butterfly haven (aka a lepidopterarium, for those wanting to know a more technical term) that’s only a short drive from Brisbane.
Making your way in, the first thing you come across is a series of viewing windows that give you a wonderful insight into the stages of metamorphosis that transform the humble and very hungry caterpillar into the majestic and beautiful butterfly. Plus you will see first-hand, the level of care that is applied through every stage of their life cycle. If Eric Carle’s much-loved book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, pops in to mind, you’re on the right track.
Depending on the time of year you visit, you’ll see literally 100s – if not 1000s – of butterflies. Monarchs, Lacewings, Swallowtails, and Cruisers to name just a few… and these are just the tip of the Birdwing!
Half-hourly introductions into the world of butterflies are conducted by knowledgeable and passionately-invested volunteer guides who will talk you through the nature and life-cycle of these incredible insects - you're welcome to join this talk at any time during your visit.
Importantly, before being unleashed into the butterflies’ world, visitors are strictly reminded that the butterflies can touch the visitor, but visitors are not allowed to touch the butterflies, and, being a vital food source for the butterflies, the flowers are not to be picked.
As you meander around the space, ‘Flight Attendants’, the names that are given to the dedicated volunteers who are always close by to share with you their experiences and to keep a watchful eye over the sanctuary (and over the very excitable kids – big and small), will point you in the direction of any garden highlights you may not yet have discovered.
And believe me, around every curve you will notice something you didn't see on the first lap or two! From the positive, inspirational quotes, and the quirky flora art installations and water features, through to beautiful spots to just sit, relax and take it all in.
Make sure you don't miss the Stick Insect Tree, not to mention discovering where the Ulysses Butterfly most like to hang out when they're in the house (hint: head to the rear wall). And, most importantly, make sure you have your camera ready at all times. Whilst the surrounds are all stationary, the colourful little critters you came here to see are so much faster than you think!!
Outside the netted area, you’ll also discover that Bribie Island Butterfly House boasts a nursery that proffers a well-researched and propagated selection of seasonal, butterfly-attracting flora available for sale, perfect for providing butterfly-friendly plants in our gardens at home. There’s even a spot to grab a very relaxed cuppa before heading off to explore Bribie Island further.
Nice to know – In the world of spirituality, the butterfly is one of the most symbolic creatures – it signifies the power of transformation, so when a butterfly crosses your path it is meant to represent that you should embrace a positive, personal change about to come into your life.
Nice to know – If you’re wearing bright colours, it is more likely that the butterflies will be attracted to you and will land on you to say hello. Apparently, yellow is their favourite colour!
Need to know – 100% of entry costs go back into running and maintaining the Bribie Island Butterfly House. Parking is off-street and free of charge.
By Danella Perrins
Bribie Island Butterfly House
208 First Avenue
Wed & Sun only