Butterflies at the Library

If you visit our Coventry Village Branch, you’ll get more than your standard library services at this time of year. Our reference desks are staffed by not just friendly library workers, but also some remarkable visitors: monarch butterflies.  

Here at Coventry, we participate in two citizen science programs: Monarch Watch and Journey North. Through our participation, professional scientists get more data on monarch migrations, and our patrons get to watch the monarch life cycle unfold. Some are lucky enough to witness the most amazing stage: 

Last week, towards the end of a busy day, it seemed as though the whole world stopped to watch a monarch butterfly emerge from its chrysalis. An awe-inspired hush fell over us, colleagues and patrons, adults and children alike, as we took in this miracle of nature. And then came our curiosity: How on Earth does this even work? 

We have opportunities coming up to satisfy that curiosity.  

On Wednesday, September 6 at 4 p.m., we’ll be partnering with the National Park Service for Monarch Butterflies: A Season of Migration. Registration begins today!  

On Thursday, October 5 at 4 p.m., our youth services librarians will be offering a child-focused Milkweed and Monarchs program in our collaborative garden! We’ll be participating in Journey North’s Symbolic Monarch Migration again this year.  

And every day, we offer many excellent books about monarchs and other butterflies. Here are just a few: 








Traveling Butterflies by Susumu Shingu is a beautiful work of art and one of my personal favorites.  

Monarch Butterfly by Gail Gibbons, master of nonfiction, is an extremely informative picture book.  

Monarch and Milkweed by Helen Frost & Leonid Gore strikes a balance between beautiful illustrations and information.  

Finally, Waiting for Wings, in Lois Ehlert’s signature cut paper illustrations, shows the life cycle of several butterfly species and highlights the plants that pollinators love.  

As of today, we’re working alongside about a dozen chrysalises, as well as several caterpillars of all sizes.  

Visit us soon to learn more about these amazing creatures! 

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