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January 24, 2015

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Life & Arts

Sights to See

Bugging out: NOLAs Audubon

Butterfly Garden and
Insectarium captivates visitors




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Posted: Saturday, June 7, 2014 9:01 pm | Updated: 12:44 am,

Sun Jul 6, 2014.
Mary Eloise H. Leake




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Special to The Star

Know how a certain unforgettable smell, object or taste

can transport you immediately back to another time and
place? The New Orleans Audubon Butterfly Garden and
Insectarium is jam-packed with all three memorymakers.

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Walk down a brightly muraled hall crawling with 3-D

bugs of all sorts and visit the exhibit that reveals how
insects use chemistry for defense. Put your nose over the
whirligig beetle box and smell sour apple candy. Sniff the
vinegaroon and get a snootful of pungent vinegar.

Submitted photo

New Orleans Insectarium

A walking leaf insect is seen at the New Orleans Audubon
Butterfly Garden and Insectarium.

View all 3 images in gallery.


If You Go...
The New Orleans Audubon Butterfly Garden and
Insectarium is open seven days a week from 10
a.m.-5 p.m. Tickets for adults are $16.50, children
ages 2-12 are $12 and seniors 65 and older are $13.
The city streetcars stop at all three Audubon
Institute properties the Butterfly Garden and
Insectarium, Aquarium and Zoo and package
deals are available. For more information, visit

These funky, fun things are in the Success Stories

Gallery (one of 13), which includes biting and stinging
critters, too. Girls love the pink-toed diva-like tarantulas
there, and the pink katydids across the hall. While the
ABGIs famous eeew factor is intact, this place awakens
the inner child in everyone. Even teens forget to roll
their eyes as they whip out their camera phones to show
their buds the Madagascar hissing roach climbing over
the docents hand.
According to ABGIs Pied Piper, Zach Lemann, manager
of the Animal and Visitor Programs, three presentation
stations provide up-close-and-personal encounters with
caterpillars, beetles, millipedes and roaches. Your first
reaction? Yuck. But Lemann and his crew are
mesmerizing, drawing you into the moment like the
spider luring the fly but in a good way.
The Awards Night 4-D movie, with animation and a
dollop of live action, is a certifiable hoot. Prancing,
flying and hopping down the red carpet, the celebrities
vying for the Bug Oscars voiced by Jay Leno, Joan
Rivers and Brad Garrett can be girly like Keiko
Caterpillar or easily agitated like Wanda Wasp. But
when the big don (think The Godfather) Coleoptera
beetle stomps in, the seats shake, plus during the other
presentations youre zapped with appropriate spray,
wind and odors.

30 minutes ago

Attention: Local Talent, if you want to be part of

"Writer's Night" on Thursday nights at HOM, send us a
message on Twitter or Facebook! (View photo)

Before entering the serene indoor Asian Butterfly

Garden, stop at the Metamorphosis Gallery to learn
more about the four stages of butterfly life. If youre
lucky, youll see an emerging butterfly open its wings for
the first time.


ABGI burst its own chrysalis in 2008 and is now flying

high in the French Quarters original U.S. Customs
House. Since then the Butterfly Garden Gallery has been
ratcheted up with a koi pond, a pagoda-like display with
rainbow-hued Gouldian finches, and neat red-footed
tortoises. Hundreds of jazzy butterflies flit around in a
kaleidoscope of colors echoing the citys Mardi Gras
Most folks come to Nawlins for its fabulous food. You
can devour all the standard fare poboys, jambalaya,
gumbo and red beans and rice or you can up the ante
and chow down at the Insectariums Bug Appetit.
Smacking your lips is easy when you are gobbling up
Wheat Thins topped with spicy mango chutney
(mangos, apples and waxworms). Six-legged salsa (salsa
and mealworms) lends a tantalizing bite to tortilla chips.
And just pop the crispy Cajun crickets (dusted with
cinnamon and sugar) into your mouth and crunch down.

on groceries by catching your own food.

Hubbard's Off Main

Lemanns got the necessary creds he once cooked

creepy crawlies on Jay Lenos Tonight Show. Pick up
the recipe pamphlet. Just think of the money youll save

Kia Store
Rainbow City
Rainbow City, AL


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Think eating bugs is not your thing? According to The Eat-A-Bug Cookbook by David George Gordon, The FDA
allows an average of 60 or more insect fragments in every 100 grams of chocolate and 30 or more insect fragments




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per 100 grams of peanut butter.

Plus, if you think about it, honey is basically bee vomit While the Insectarium has won no James Beard Award
for its delicacies, its surely on the short list.
Speaking of bugs ...
Nashvilles Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art has gone quite buggy, as well. From now through
Aug. 31, David Rogers Big Bugs are roaming the 55-acre grounds.
This most unusual art installation spotlights 10 humongous insect sculptures made from natural materials like
found or cut trees, sticks, twine and bark. Two special interactive sculptures fashioned by two of the citys architect
firms allow kids and adults alike to explore a beehive and experience the life of a butterfly.
Visit for more information.



Posted in Life, Travel on Saturday, June 7, 2014 9:01 pm. Updated: 12:44 am.



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