SYMONDS YAT WEST, ROSS-ON-WYE,
HEREFORDSHIRE, HR9 6DA, ENGLAND
About us

OPEN TODAY

10 am - 4 pm (last in 3 pm)

Directions Links Access Statement.pdf Group Activities Ticket Prices Online Offer HEDGE PUZZLE The  Look what’s here… MINIATVRE GOLF Wye Valley Wye Valley BUTTERFLY ZOO Butterfly Gallery

Wye Valley BUTTERFLY ZOO

You can walk with butterflies from around the world. Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo is indoors, it’s tropical and it’s teeming with exotic butterflies.

Living butterflies fly around as you discover their fascinating lives in close-up. They’re amazing.

See for yourself every stage of their life-cycle: Egg, caterpillar, chrysalis and some of the world’s most beautiful butterflies.

Discounted tickets with the aMazing Hedge Puzzle and half price MiniGolf are available.

The species we breed in our zoo have fascinating survival strategies, and there’s loads to learn. Bring a camera for superb wildlife photography.

The Zoo shop has wonderful gifts, butterfly plants, and books on wildlife. It’s a real treat.

The butterfly farm is within walking distance of Forest Holidays in the Forest of Dean between Monmouth and Ross on Wye at Symonds Yat in the Wye Valley.

Once, field naturalists’ clubs could charter excursion trains to the Upper Wye Gorge. Independent tourists would bring rods, guns, tents and even boats by train to “live off the land”, or could hire all they needed here. Tenants of farms and cottages bred butterflies for sale. From about 1850, for 60 years, collectors were duped into thinking that they had found rare specimens so that they would leave a large tip and spread the word to the lepidopterist fraternity to bring more trade to the area. The eccentric country sportsman A. B. Farn, a Past President of the Entomological Society, retired here a century ago to end the fraud: He bred local species and released them - but secretly exterminated colonies of alien species.

Today, there are over thirty indigenous species on the hills around Symonds Yat, but half a dozen of those recorded by “A.B.F.” are extinct. Add our Nature Notes and Spotters’ Guide to your favourites to keep up with the news about butterflies to see on the hills overlooking the Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo month by month. Volunteer Recorders are needed to establish butterfly-count transects and raise the profile for conservation funding in the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Come and see us, or if you want to help elsewhere in Britain, contact the charity Butterfly Conservation.

We manage our own Nature Reserve. We engaged Barnaby Millard, Conservation Landscape Architect to improve the range of habitats to benefit insects, birds, reptiles and small mammals from the start. We’ve preserved existing habitat zones, and enhanced habitat microdiversity to shelter and sustain wildlife and create ecocline gradation through trampling. This preserves and creates habitat niches suited to the specific preferences of various fauna and flora. We hope to change its habitat classification from “improved grassland” to “wildflower meadow” in three years.

Barnaby has now taken a post with the RHS at Wisley. He was our second Conservation Landscape Architect. We’ve also provided work experience for University College Worcester’s Sustainable Development Advocacy (Professional Practice) MA course, and a paid internship surveying local lepidoptera.

Butterfly Conservation

Here at Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo we are not just passionate about butterfly conservation, we really work at it. We support sustainable Butterfly Farming worldwide through trade: This devalues collected specimens and preserves rainforest and other habitats.