An Audubon Nature Institute volunteer shows an insect to a curious toddler.New Experiences Emerge

Audubon Nature Institute added an exciting new branch to the family tree on June 13, 2008—Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium. Located in the historic U.S. Custom House in downtown New Orleans, the Butterfly Garden and Insectarium was the first major new attraction to open in the city since Hurricane Katrina.

The Butterfly Garden and Insectarium celebrates the world of bugs with 13 gallery rooms containing more than 70 live animal enclosures, 30 mounted specimen cases and a multisensory immersive theater experience. There are about 100 live arthropod species throughout as well as a variety of fish. Visitors can experience live insect encounters, discover cultural aspects of insects, sample exotic insect cuisine, shrink in size to see the world from a bug’s perspective, and enjoy the tranquility of a Japanese garden while watching hundreds of butterflies flit about.

This one-of-a-kind interactive experience is another “living classroom” designed to show how human lives are affected by nature—and what we all stand to lose without careful stewardship of its every, treasured resource.