Winston Churchill Tried To Resurrect An Extinct Butterfly Species

Winston Churchill Tried To Resurrect An Extinct Butterfly Species

We have all heard of the legendary British Prime Minister Winston Churchill. He presided over a nation while it was immersed in the most unimaginable horrors of war. However, Churchill was a peculiar man, as he was not always immersed in the business of international politics; instead Churchill was concerned with butterflies. The black veined white butterfly was one butterfly that was of particular concern to Churchill. Apparently, even during wartime, Churchill wanted to build a butterfly garden at his summertime home in order to reintroduce the extinct black veined white butterfly into his homeland. However, Churchill’s dreams of presiding over his own butterfly garden were never realized, until recently.

Conservationists have built the butterfly garden of Churchill’s dreams, and it looks like it could be put to good use during these modern times. However, Churchill’s butterfly related ideas perplexed his contemporaries, and his efforts to reintroduce the black veined white butterfly ended in disaster. This plan was quite ambitious, and the former Prime Minister’s failure to resurrect this particular butterfly was not the result of a lack of trying. In an effort to see a living black veined white butterfly, Churchill had a breeding house created on his property. He also had particularly rare caterpillars imported from regions across the world in order to place the specimens inside of huslin bags. Churchill would then place the bags along a hedge within his garden.

In the end, not much came of Churchill’s efforts. However, according to Matthew Oates, who is overseeing the project to recreate and finish Churchill’s butterfly farm, Winston Churchill can be genuinely honored as a pioneering butterfly gardener. So far the honorary butterfly garden has turned out many exotic butterflies. These butterflies include six peacock butterflies as well as numerous painted lady butterflies. Winston Churchill would have been moved.

Do you have a favorite type of butterfly? Do you know of any other world leaders that obsessed over a particular insect?

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