Catch Something Fluttering By

MT
Despite the warm spring weather, it is probably too early to find butterflies in the average Moscow courtyard. You can find hundreds of them, however, at the Moscow House of Butterflies. Not quite a year old, the exhibition consists of more than 200 square meters of warm, humid space, decorated with plants, ponds and netting, where butterflies might take a rest -- although the insects are just as likely to land on visitors' hands or purses. Few of the butterflies in the exhibit sport bright markings, and finding them becomes a game of hide-and-seek around the bridges, ramps and platforms that break up the space. Once located, the butterflies can be coaxed from their perches onto a finger by gently touching their feet. The butterfly house also has a glass box of cocoons, which provide an interesting lesson about nature for younger visitors.

And, as if the butterflies themselves were not a big enough attraction, or not a big enough attraction for the boys forced to accompany their sisters to the exhibit, one wall of the room is lined with terrariums, filled with spiders, including giant tarantulas. A small room near the entrance contains terrariums with mice and lizards -- which are not, presumably, the next meal for the tarantulas.

Entrance is 200 rubles for adults and 100 rubles for children.

The Moscow Butterfly House
Pavilion 2, the All-Russian Exhibition Center (VVTs)
M. VDNKh, 935-8257, www.dombabochek.com.