Tripura’s lone butterfly park is a major draw for domestic, international tourists

 Wednesday, March 22, 2023 


A butterfly park built by the forest department in a hamlet near the India-Bangladesh international border in Tripura’s South district is now a significant draw for tourists from all over the country and Bangladesh, PTI news agency reported.

The Butterfly EcoPark at Chottakhola, near the Trishna WildLife refuge, is the region’s first butterfly park. It opened in 2016 on 5.5 hectares of land and has 250 different kinds of butterflies.

“Many tourists are visiting the butterfly park. There are domestic tourists and also from neighbouring Bangladesh. The park is near the endangered bison park at Trishna wildlife sanctuary and Indo-Bangla Maitri Park to commemorate the Bangladesh liberation war. So, tourists can see three spots in one visit”, Deputy Conservator of Forest, Krishnagopal Roy told PTI.

He stated that there is a breeding facility for the winged creature, and that many plants that the butterfly prefers are planted to provide a nice habitat for the insect and artificial feeds are supplied at times.

Tripura Tourism Minister Sushanta Chowdhury stated that Trishna Wild Life Sanctuary and its surroundings attract a significant number of tourists and would contribute to the state’s economic growth.

Chowdhury emphasised the need of creating a tourism circuit that incorporates other appealing places in the neighbourhood.

Butterflies, according to wildlife and environmental specialists, are signs of ecological balance and a healthy ecosystem.

The forest department has chosen to promote butterflies as a component of tourism development in Tripura, so that tourists from the state and even from outside the state may enjoy the relaxing look of butterflies in swarms travelling from one side of the park to the other.

“There is plenty of scope to promote butterflies as a tourist attraction as the state has its own variety of vegetation having many plants with medicinal values that grow here naturally, and shelters more than 250 species of butterflies. All these butterflies have their own specific character and give the spectator an unforgettable experience”, Roy said.

According to forest officials, the agency conducted a study across the state and discovered that similar parks can be established in twenty more locations.

PTI quoted Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF), KS Shethy as saying, “Even though the size of Tripura is small, there is no dearth of wildlife and biodiversity here. Tripura has about 250 species of butterflies. These colourful butterflies are loved by everyone including children. So the forest department is trying to increase the number of butterflies to make the tourism industry of the state more attractive”.

Nevertheless, in an effort to promote butterflies, the Tripura Forest Department recently designated “Common Birdwing” as the state butterfly and made efforts to promote the insect as a tool to attract tourists. Exporting butterflies may also yield a lot of money in foreign currencies.

Based on statements from forest officials, PTI further stated that butterflies are not only a subject of beauty or research, but also of economic importance. Commercially importing and exporting butterflies can generate millions of dollars in business each year. Between 20 and 30 million dollars worth of butterflies are traded worldwide each year.

Raising a note of concern, the minister said, “In recent times, the number of butterflies and their natural habitats are decreasing alarmingly due to global environmental pollution caused by humans and climate change. This is why they need to be preserved”.

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