Mothers often tell their children to “Eat Your Vegetables,” but the staff at Butterfly Wonderland has a different mantra: “Insects Are Yummy to the Tummy!”

Butterfly Wonderland continues to add new programs and adventures to encourage children of all ages to reconnect with nature in a fun, educational environment.  Now, the new “Edible Insects Station” will help visitors learn about “entomophagy”– the practice of eating insects.  Some of the tasty insect treats include chips made with cricket protein; chocolate covered ants; coconut brittle mealworms; and scorpion lollipops.  While it sounds creepy, the tastes are very similar to other foods eaten on a regular basis such as organic chips, sunflower seeds, and chocolate covered nuts.  The edible insect station will be sponsored by the non-profit Butterfly Wonderland Foundation with all profits supporting their mission in the state of Arizona.

“Children that visit our rainforest are often adventurous and anxious to try something new,” said Dee Mangulins, Executive Director. “Our new Edible Insects Station is a fun and tasty new way for them to have a better understanding about what our butterflies eat but also learn more about different foods and cultures.”

“Entomophagy” is defined as the practice of eating insects and their relatives. Some of educational information at the Edible Insect Station includes: 

• 2 billion people across the world eat insects as part of their normal diet.

• Insects have proven to be more environmentally friendly than raising traditional livestock and offer more protein compared pound per pound to traditional livestock. 

• Insects belong to a group known as arthropods that include favorite delicacies such as shrimp, crab, and lobster.

Butterfly Wonderland is the largest butterfly conservatory in America. It features a magnificent indoor conservatory that brings a tropical rainforest environment to the Arizona desert where 3,000 butterflies fly freely.  In addition, there are interactive exhibits, a Butterfly Emergence Gallery, 3D movie theater, Spineless Giants exhibit, Butterfly Café, Butterfly Treasures Gift Shop and a Rainforest Reptile exhibit.  Butterfly Wonderland is open daily from 9am-6pm. Cameras are welcome.  Butterfly Wonderland is located at 9500 E. Via de Ventura in Scottsdale, AZ 85256 within the OdySea in the Desert Entertainment Destination at the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. For more information, call 480-800-3000 or visit