The Rocky Mountain Butterfly Consortium opened in 1995 as a public butterfly house and invertebrate zoo called Butterfly Pavilion. The original campus included exhibit space, administrative offices, and a 7,000 square-foot rainforest conservatory and served approximately 200,000 visitors. Today, we are home to over 5,000 animals, mostly invertebrates - animals without backbones - that make up 97% of all animal species on the planet. Serving over 315,000 visitors a year including 115,000 children, we provide access, education and understanding to the world of invertebrates. As the first stand-alone invertebrate facility to receive association of zoos and aquariums accreditation in 2014, we are designed to showcase the diversity of these small wonders, their habitats, and the BIG role they play in ensuring the health of our environment. Our mission is to foster an appreciation of invertebrates while educating the public about the importance of conservation of threatened habitats in the tropics and around the world. Our long-term goals and vision is centered on three major goals:
• To be a leading educational resource for the community on invertebrates, their habitats and their role in the ecosystem
• To be a recognized scientific authority throughout the U.S. and the world for research on invertebrates and conservation of their habit
• To create an enriching experience for a diverse community base
Current Programs. At Butterfly Pavilion, we connect our visitors with unique and exciting experiences focused on education, conservation, and developing an appreciation for invertebrates big and small. Guests gain an understanding in what an invertebrate is and their importance to healthy natural areas. Most natural history museums and botanical gardens around the world were initially established in order to advance knowledge about "useful" species, and to acclimatize new ones. But both curiosity and potential usefulness of previously despised species progressively led to the study of more and more unexpected animals. We cannot guarantee that every guest will leave the Butterfly Pavilion with a new appreciation for the Madagascar Hissing Cockroach or Tarantula Wasp but if one young child has a better understanding of what those ants are doing in his/her backyard by watching our educational ant colony at work, we have accomplished at least a beginning to one person's environmental education. We believe that an appreciation of the environment begins with an appreciation of all living things. Every day we teach the young and old alike about the need for conservation, because with knowledge and empowerment we will protect the world's natural habitats for generations to come.
Our mission is to foster an appreciation of invertebrates while educating the public about the importance of conservation of threatened habitats in the tropics and around the world.