Ramsgate Butterfly Sanctuary
Also previously known as the "Butterfly Farm / Butterfly Valley"
A Place of peace and tranquility where the jewels of nature reside
protected form those elements, so well known to destroy, all in their paths.
The launching of the Ramsgate Butterfly Sanctuary took place in 2001 and was opened to the general public in 2002. In attendance was the media - newspapers; Daily News, Herald, The Fever, Die Beeld, The Citizen and others - TV - 50/50 and radio station East Coast Radio.
Throughout the day of the opening - 14th January 2002- it was visited by 427 members of the public. The Ramsgate Butterfly Sanctuary ran for a good six years until October, 2008 under the supervision of Conservation of Butterflies in South Africa (CBISA) and the South African Butterfly Breeding Association (SABBA).
Through the years of operation it was discovered that the present layout was not suitable for a Butterfly Sanctuary and that the changes that would have to be made would be rather expensive.
(CBISA) and (SABBA) as a whole were not prepared to invest this kind of capital on leased land. The decision was made to end occupation of the leased land and to acquire land that is more favorable in the same area.
All parties concerned agreed and (CBISA) and (SABBA) vacated the premises in August, 2008. It has since changed hands and its name was changed.
The planning of a new Butterfly Sanctuary is now well underway. But this will take time and a large capital sum to establish. In the mean time planning of other butterfly sanctuaries is also underway. One in Sun City has already been completed and now open to the public.
Truly a heart felt - must for all. The butterfly on the right is is a rare one - an intermediate form of the butterfly Precis seseamus octavia and Precis octavia.
This intermediate form appears with the change of seasons from summer to winter - but not from summer to winter. A butterfly of absolute uniqueness. This rare form is called form transience - a transition between two forms - between summer and winter. Hence the name. In all my years of collecting butterflies I have only seen two specimens in other collectors collections.
Another butterfly - Eurytela hairbas vashti is one of those extremely rare butterflies of which I have had the privilege to breed - The breeding program for this particular species was purely for their safety from two females captured - we managed to get 89 eggs and from these eggs we managed to breed 63 perfect specimens. Of this only 12 specimens were kept for scientific recording and identification purposes - while two gravid females were kept for the winter brood. The remainder were release back into their natural habitat. From the 2 gravid female kept for the purpose of breeding and recording the entire life cycle. From these we managed to get 142 eggs and eventually managed to breed through 114 perfect specimens. All of which were released back into their natural habitat. I has been a remarkable and exhilarating experience. For more information - visit the site www.ramsgatepiper.co.za
One of the nicest things about the Ramsgate Butterfly Sanctuary 2001-2008 was the fact that they had professionally trained Butterfly Tour Guides that took groups of people on tours through the sanctuary. The tour started at the entrance to the sanctuary and to begin with a lecture was firstly provided by Earle Whiteley to make every aware of the plight of butterflies - their life cycle and the conservation of butterflies. This was followed by everyone being divided into groups which were designated to a tour guide who then took the group on a tour through the sanctuary. Starting with the host plants - then the various butterflies - minimum of 12 species - then to the breeding room to see all the various larva - pupae - and if you were lucky to see a butterfly emerge from its chrysalis. Sometimes the interest and questioned asked would make the tour last up to three hours. It was this format used by the Ramsgate Butterfly Sanctuary that made it a famous venue on the South Coast as a holiday destination.
Its fame grew from the word of mouth advertising by people who had visited the sanctuary. Many of the people came back every year to see the progress of the sanctuary and to enjoy the interesting tours. They enjoyed the craft shop with many of its hand made butterfly decor and ornaments. As well as the tea garden and small restaurant which supplied a variety of local quizine.
CBISA invites new individuals who come across this website to become members of this unique Non Profit Company (NPC). The offer is open to you - to assist wherever you feel it is within your capability to do so. There is a membership fee of R250 per month. This membership allows you to take advantage of this website presented by CBISA - which covers a very wide spectrum of all the existing and future planned projects of CBISA as well as allowing you some opportunity to become involved in them - should they be of interest to you. A monthly newsletter is automatically provided for your benefit.
Contact Details: Office: Cell: 074 422 5587 ~ Click Here Membership Application Form