Early Spring Butterflies

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Butterflies are a great sign that spring is coming! As soon as the days warm up, they will start to emerge and feed on nectar from early spring flowers such as blossom, red deadnettle, primrose and dandelions!

Did you know that most butterflies have a very short life and will die before winter. However, a few species will hibernate over winter in places such as sheds and woodlands! Some caterpillars can also "over-winter" and will emerge as a butterfly very early in the spring. A lot of these species are able to deal with much colder weather than the species we typically see emerging in the summer.

To help you learn all about these spring butterflies we have created some activities which you can do either in your local park or at home.  

Outdoor Activity

Download the ID guide below and take this with you when you visit Willen Lake or your local park. Find a sunny spot on a hedgerow where there are lots of blossoms and wait for the butterflies to come to you! Can you identify each one? You might even be lucky enough to take a picture, if you are make sure you share these with us on our social channels. 

Indoor Activity

If you can't get outside, we have also create an indoor activity that you can enjoy from home. Try creating a piece of butterfly art inspired by an early spring species. This can be in any media you like, whether that is paint or twigs and leaves! Try to make your art symmetrical like you see in the markings of a butterfly. Once your masterpiece is finished don't forget to share this with us! 

Download activity sheet

Discover our parks

  • Willen Lake North

    Facilities:

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    Willen Lake North is home to one of Milton Keynes’ best-known landmarks, the first Peace Pagoda to be built in the western world - and to a rich and varied bird population.

  • Willen Lake South

    Facilities:

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    Willen Lake is Milton Keynes’ most popular park. Visitors take part in watersports activities, go cycling, enjoy the playground, try the high ropes course or simply picnic along Willen’s shores. It’s a great place to entertain all ages of family and friends, whether it’s a visit to the café or restaurant, a stroll, trying a beginners’ course in sailing or hiring a pedalo or bike.

  • Every year The Parks Trust helps around 6500 people to learn about their local environment through outdoor learning workshops and interactive walks and talks.
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