Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Tuesday Treasures #butterfly #bee #Panama

 It’s hard to believe we have been back a whole week. I’ve spent days unpacking the things we brought and integrating them into our little studio space. We brought a few of our personal treasures and a few things that are difficult to find here. My camera was at the top of my list and I was itching to use it again.

We knew there was a butterfly garden nearby so yesterday we went in search. Lo and behold it is at the bottom of the mountain road we live on and I can easily walk down anytime I want. Yay! 

Miel Boquetena or Boquete Bee and Butterfly is an amazing operation. Conservation is important in Central America. We were thrilled to find this to be true in Costa Rica when we lived there and are just as happy to find it here in Panama as well.  

Panamanians care very much about the natural processes in nature. From coffee growers and landscapers to bee and butterfly keepers, there is a lot of research and wisdom that is poured into their projects. This was certainly true of the work going on at Miel Boquetena. The establishment is still growing and currently offers tours of the beautiful butterfly garden. The tour includes complete education about the life cycle of the native species and offers the chance to carefully interact with the caterpillars and butterflies? We even watched a yellow Swallowtail emerge from its cocoon! Our tour guide, Logan, was amazing. Originally from South Africa, this young man has fast tracked to becoming a real expert on butterflies. 

Logan began by showing us various butterfly eggs from the different varieties that live in the habitat and surrounding area. He even showed us how to tell if the eggs are fertilized to become viable larvae.

It was amazing the difference between the eggs!

These beauties are Monarch Chrysalis. They look so much like gilded jade jewelry!

Although resembling mini dragons, these creatures are really Owl butterfly caterpillars. Owl Butterflies are extraordinary. The markings on their outer wings resemble owls’ eyes that are designed by nature to ward off predators. 

I was able to pet one too! The spikes on its back only look prickly. This larva was soft and fuzzy, like a kiwi!

If you look closely you can see the outline of the Monarch still curled up inside, just waiting for the perfect moment to emerge. 

With a helping finger for encouragement a Yellow Swallowtail is born! 

They are quite wet and crumpled after emergence and take a couple of hours to dry enough for flying. 

Can you see the butterfly contour in this colorful chrysalis?

Owl Butterfly

Mating time for these Yellow Swallowtails

Butterflies love cone flowers. And pentas!

Helaconius butterfly. They normally flit about wildly, making it difficult to photograph.

Zebra butterfly

My personal favorite.. the elusive Glasswing butterfly.

If you look closely you can see the butterfly eggs on this leaf. The tiny white dots would be easy to mistake for a bit of dirt. 

The only shot I got of the gorgeous Blue Morpho. They were very active. Again, if you look closely you can see a tiny hint of blue from the inside left wing showing through the tear in its lower right wing.

This Malachite Butterfly took a liking to hubby. 

Monarch butterfly caterpillars

This is a new hydroponic system they are building to grow vegetation for the larvae to feed on in a safe environment. 

Helaconius Catrpillar
Also prickly to look at but quite soft. 

A beautiful place to walk with butterflies.

We had never seen a blue bloom like this and the manger Johnny came out to answer our questions about the flowers in the garden. This one he said is in the same family as the lima bean! 

If only I could fly….

We’ll go back another day for the bee and honey tour. They offer honey tastings as well and there is a B&B in the works so that guests can enjoy the beauty during their stay. 

In that tiny hole beside the large one on the lower right of the photo were the tiniest bees I have ever seen flying in and out, busy with their work.  At first I thought they were mosquitoes! 

I’m so glad I didn’t swat at them! 😱

We purchased this beautiful bottle of raw honey. The gift shop had a lot of different honey choices as well as bee and butterfly jewelry, stationary and scarves. It was a very well thought out collection with lovely presentation. There is a side porch with a menu for coffees and bebidas but it was closed when we were there. 😞

Ahhhh….. another of my happy places.


  1. This is a beautiful place, Cheryl. I'm glad you had a chance to visit. No surprise that the butterfly liked hubs - makes perfect sense.

  2. It really was beautiful. Yes, the ore Malachite has healing properties. 😉We all know butterflies are healing.

  3. This was fun and fascinating!!! Thank you, Cheryl! I especially love the picture of you with the giant blue wings behind you ... if only you could fly! 🦋

    1. Thanks Jull! Oh the places I would go! 😀

  4. What an incredible experience! And how wonderful that you will be able to repeat it whenever you want. Thank you for sharing.

  5. What a wonderful place to find and it's just down your road!! The images are lovely!

  6. Thanks Pam. Transformation is so necessary in life. Seeing it happen before one’s eyes is very encouraging. ❤️

  7. Jewels with wings. Lovely Cheryl. Thanks

    1. That’s what they are John! Delicate treasures. Thanks!

  8. Fantastic place and a wonderful article, Cheryl. As always, your images are stunning.

    1. Oh hi Peter! It’s good to see you. I hope to visit it again soon. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you are well. ❤️

  9. I was on the patio yesterday and was visited by a gorgeous butterfly. Ii was a pipeline swallowtail. He stayed with me for a while.

    1. What a lovely gift, John! There are many wonderful species in Florida.


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