As beautiful as butterflies may look, they are incredibly tender and fragile creatures that should be handled with extreme caution. However, sometimes accidents happen and they might get injured – what do you then? Take them to a butterfly doctor? Well, we’re pretty sure butterfly doctors don’t exist but Katie VanBlaricum, the founder of Insect Art, is the closest person to one. In fact, after a deformed Monarch butterfly was born in a local zoo, they contacted Katie and asked for her help “repairing” the insect – and she did it with flying colors.
Katie VanBlaricum, the founder of Insect Art, recently helped repair a Monarch butterfly’s wing
“I have a friend who works at a butterfly conservatory, and I have seen his “Frankenstein” butterflies flying around there, so I knew it was possible,” said Katie. “I asked him for advice, as well as consulting the internet.”
She actually gave the deformed butterfly a wing transplant!
The operation was successful and soon enough the butterfly was flying around collecting nectar
The woman has been creating insect art for almost 14 years and says she has always been interested in insects and wildlife. “I did take some entomology classes in college, but my degree was in Anthropology. My favorite thing about insects is their diversity,” explained Katie. “Any shape or color or behavior you can dream up, there’s an insect for that! I am very much inspired by people like Steve Irwin whose passion it was to make the world love the underappreciated animals.”
Eventually, Katie released the butterfly
Katie has been volunteering for a wildlife rehab for over ten years and is also a docent at a local zoo. She says that helping animals and people is a long term passion of hers.
Katie has been helping butterflies for several years now
When not helping troubled butterflies, Katie creates amazing jewelry by rehydrating insects to make them look almost lifelike.
Here’s how Katie helped the butterfly
See the full video below!
Butterfly Wing repair video, at your request. Honestly, this is probably the worst job I have ever done on a live butterfly (new wing isn’t perfectly straight), but it will show you how the process is done, so you can try it yourself if you ever have to.
Posted by Insect Art on Thursday, September 26, 2019