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NEW! Rocky Mountain National Park Butterflies: West of the Divide

Sep 4, 2020


Butterflies fly in every life zone of Rocky Mountain National Park. This class 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 identify these species while discussing their life histories, ecology, host-plant associations, conservation concerns, and the impact of loss of lodgepole pine stands to bark beetles. The class will focus on butterfly observation through binoculars and digital photography. However, the instructor will have a net-and-release permit to allow participants a close-up look at a variety of butterfly species!

CSM credit available

Meets at Trail River Ranch

Instructors: Paul Opler, Evi Buckner-Opler