About Us

Our Mission

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Increase the public’s awareness of
butterflies and the important role
they play in the environment.

Original House in Navarre
New Home in Milton

Our Story

The Panhandle Butterfly House

For more than two decades, The Panhandle Butterfly House & Nature Center has been enjoyed by countless locals, tourists, students, and community groups. Our goal is to enhance the environmental awareness by connecting its visitors with Florida native butterflies, botanical gardens, and nature trails.

Out of nearly 17.500 butterfly species worldwide, Florida is only home to more than 160 butterfly species, while an additional 200 species migrate through the state annually according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The Panhandle Butterfly House is committed to exclusively displaying Florida-native butterflies in the vivarium, allowing visitors to learn about the butterflies they may encounter in their backyards and throughout nature. In addition to our live butterflies in the vivarium, we also have a collection containing more than 300 mounted butterflies from all over the world, donated by a local and avid butterfly collector, Dr. Tom Grow.

Furthermore by only including native species, our volunteers and visitors have the opportunity to witness the full butterfly life cycle from laying the eggs to hatching into caterpillars to building their chrysalises and then emerging as adult butterflies. `{`Federal law prohibits breeding at butterfly houses with foreign or exotic butterflies due to risk of escape.`}`

The Panhandle Butterfly House & Nature Center is a joint program of the 501(c)3 non-profit organization Keep Santa Rosa Beautiful, Inc. and The University of Florida IFAS Extension.

Founded by Jack and Fonda Weatherell in Navarre.
Rebuilt following Hurricanes Ivan and Dennis.
From 2007-2014, increased annual visitors by nearly 30%.
Celebrated its 20th anniversary of butterfly education.
Temporarily closed in search of a new home.
Relocated to T.W. Jones House in the Milton Historical District.
Selected as an Impact 100 grant recipient.

1997
2005
2007-2014
2017
2018
2019
2020
pbh donation levels

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    The Panhandle Butterfly House and Nature Center. 2021. All rights reserved.