SNAKE handling, beetle demonstrations and blood-sucking leeches are just some of the hands-on treats in store at Stratford Butterfly Farm this summer.
The tourist attraction on Swan’s Nest Lane has a bumper-packed programme of events running throughout the summer holidays from July 23 to September 4.
Richard Read, the Butterfly Farm’s resident expert horticulturist will be in the Discovery Zone each Tuesday talking about how to care for houseplants and the benefits of having them in the home, as well as how to create ‘nature gardens’ to attract wildlife into people’s own green areas.
Pupae demonstrations will show visitors how the Farm populates its butterflies from all over the tropics, learning about the conservation and community projects the pupae have been farmed from, how the pupae are transported to the Butterfly Farm and how the Farm prepares the pupae on wooden rods before being placed in the Emerging Case.
New to Minibeast Metropolis are Medicinal Leeches that grow up to 20cm and are the only known species in the UK to feed on human blood, although they prefer cattle, birds, and amphibians.
Visitors can also take part in Meet the Mini-Beast handling sessions with the Education Team and hold creatures such as an African Land snail, Madagascan Hissing Cockroach, Hermit Crab, and a variety of stick insects.
Beetle demonstrations will show visitors the complete life cycle of a beetle, whilst snake demonstrations will allow visitors to have a close look at the Rhinoceros rat snake or Mexican black kingsnake.
Jane Kendrick, Marketing Manager at Stratford Butterfly Farm said, “We have so much on offer over the holidays with lots of talks and demonstrations plus the opportunity to see our new Medical Leeches. Most people cringe at the mere mention of the word leech, but these unusual creatures have been used medically for thousands of years and were once a common sight across Europe. However, they are now quite rare due to overuse in medicine although conservation efforts are underway to restore their wild population”.
For more information visit www.butterflyfarm.co.uk or telephone on 01789 299288.