Butterflies are simply gorgeous, aren't they? They're iconic, and so often portrayed as the very essence of nature.
These little beauties aren't just about looks, though.
They're important pollinators and indicators of the health of our ecosystems. Their amazing life-cycle, (egg to caterpillar to chrysalis) is one of the wonders of nature, and a great way to teach children about the natural world!
Watching butterflies is good for us!
Being in nature can have a powerful, grounding effect, and research has shown it can even help make mental health problems like depression and anxiety less severe. We can all benefit from watching nature, and even more from doing it mindfully. Watching butterflies is a great way to begin. They're easy to spot, and very accessible to most of us; plus they're a beautiful thing to use as a natural focus! So why not try some butterfly watching....
Mindful Nature Watching:
Find a suitable and safe place, where plants are in flower. Then spend just 10 - 15 minutes looking for butterflies.
- Take a deep breath and loosen you shoulders.
- Make sure you feel relaxed and comfortable.
- Notice what's happening in the environment around you
If you spot a butterfly you might.....
- Follow the path of the sky dance, as it twists and turns.... *
- Watch as it delicately alights on a plant. Can you see the tiny legs?
- Admire its open wings as it sunbathes on a sunny path
When your time is complete, think about how you felt. Did you learn anything?
Butterfly Conservation's annual Big Butterfly Count encourages people in the UK to engage with nature this summer by watching and counting the butterflies they see. Why not join in? We can all benefit from helping these magical creatures!
* A butterflies erratic flight is really an evolutionary tactic to confuse and evade predators trying to predict its flightpath! More poisonous butterflies don’t need to do this so their flight tends to be much straighter!