Eco-tourism Destination in Lampung: Butterfly Release Center in Taman Kupu-Kupu Gita, Bandar Lampung.

Lampung has quite a lot of nature attractions from marine and beaches to National Parks. However, Taman Kupu Kupu, or Butterfly Park, Gita Persada offers a distinct destination of tourism in Lampung in term of nature-base tourism by presenting a re-engineered ecosystem as an attraction.In addition to being a place of conservation, the park is also the destination of nature and education tourism.

It all started in 1997 when Dr Herawati Sukardi, Butterfly experts from University of Lampung (UNILA), pioneered a re-engineering project of critical land at the foot of Mount BetungDesa Tanjung Manis, Kelurahan Kemiling as a conservation area of various species of butterflies from Sumatera. What was done by Dr. Herath was actually bred in captivity and also managed to manipulate the natural habitat, by apllying Habitat Enrichment Technique,  bringing back butterflies, becoming an environment which is really suitable for the survival of the butterfly.

A Rare and Protected Butterfly, Troides helena.
Butterfly Park Gita Persada has approximately 180 species of butterflies. Here, it has already successfully bred 50 species including categorized rare and protected, namely: Troides Helena. Other species among others are Perut Merah, Limau Balak, Limau Halom, Limau Tutul, Kupu Hijau, Sirsak Biru, Sirsak Hijau, Ekor Pedang, Cacapuri, Johar Kuning, Kertas, Buntar, Daun Coklat, Widuri, Kepompong Emas, dsb.
Butterfly Cage.
The park is especially equipped with a big butterfly cage. The cage is used for rearing, growing and breeding butterflies. As a destination of  education tourism, many students, from kinder garden to university students, have made use of this park to find out how a butterfly metamophosis going through a  life cycle from the eggs to an adult butterfly.

The Second Stage of A Butterfly Lifecycle, A Caterpillar.
The park, under the management of by Sahabat Alam Foundation,  covers an area of 4 hectares at an altitude of 460 meters above sea level. There is a fairly large wooden house, which is home to the Butterfly Museum and a tea house. Inside the museum, ones can find hundreds of butterflies that have been preserved, butterfly paintings, wooden sculpture, and accessories for sale. The butterflies are placed in a glass case, complete with information about the type of each butterfly
The Butterflies in glass cases.
The management also provides other facilities in the park area. The facilities include children playground, public toilets, three tree houses, and equipment for photo taking session. The park is open every day from 09.00 to 17.00 WIB; Ones can enjoy all facilities in the park for a charge of only Rp 10,000.0 or less than US$ 1 per person.

When is the best time visiting the park? Butterflies flutter most freely in the park from January to march, though present beautifully and freely in other months of the year. So, the best month visiting the park is from January to March. Come and Enjoy the mother nature in the southern tip of Sumatra Island, particularly Taman Kupu Kupu Gita Persada.

Source: personal interview with the foundation staff and other sources.


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