Pilpintuwasi Butterfly Farm (Part 1)

Before we left for Peru we purchase Lonely Planet's travel book on Peru, where we found a small section on a place called Pilpintuwasi Butterfly Farm.  Other than Quistococha Zoo, about 30 minutes down the road outside Iquitos, this was the only other "touristy" event I wanted to visit in Iquitos.

Thursday, October 12, 2007:  After hiring Merlin as our boat driver we headed up the Amazon River towards a side river going to Padre Cocha, where Pilpintuwasi was located.

It was really amazing to see how low the Amazon River was, at least twenty feet lower than the "normal" riverbank marks.  We went as far as we could in the boat which then amounted to a fifteen minute hike through a surprisingly green dry riverbed.  A few months later, my parents visited the butterfly and were able to boat all the way up to the farm entrance.
Walking along Padre Cocha's dry riverbed.
The farm is a big butterfly house, a hatchery and an animal orphanage.  The one thing I learned that each butterfly larva can only be grown on a specific plant.  They were all so beautiful, so many colors both in larvae status and full grown butterflies.  Pictures are the only way to describe how pretty they were.

The caretaker explained that the more colorful a larvae or caterpillar was the less colorful it was as an adult butterfly and the plain looking caterpillars are the more colorful butterflies.

This owl looking butterfly was one of my favorites.  That was one of it's defense mechanism against prey, since it looked like the an owl's face birds wouldn't attack it.

This butterfly was at least 12 inches across.  This picture really doesn't do justice to how LARGE it was we saw a group of them fly by and they looked like bats.

Almost scary big butterflies!!

More beautiful butterflies!!

This was a board that had different cocoons in different stages.  They were all alive and would wiggle when the caretaker sprinkled them with water.  I loved this butterfly house, or Pilpintuwasi.  I don't think I will ever find a better butterfly house.  This place was so wonderful that it's going to take another blog post to finish writing about the animal orphanage.

Related Posts: Peru