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Major new film follows butterfly migration

September 26, 2012

A new 3D film documenting the extraordinary annual migration of the Monarch butterfly hits IMAX cinemas across North America in October.

Utilizing the latest big-screen technology, “The Flight of the Butterflies” affords viewers a close-up look at the millions of Monarch butterflies that make the yearly voyage of more than 2,000 miles from Canada to the Mexican state of Michoacan.

Billed as “an awe-inspiring tale of extraordinary insect endurance and human perseverance,” the film revolves around a Monarch named Danaus plexippus, or “Dana” for short, as she embarks on the perilous journey. It also tells the tale of Doctor Fred Urquhart, a determined scientist who spent 50 years trying to discover where the butterflies mysteriously disappeared to when they flew south for winter.

High-tech film equipment was transported into the forests of Michoacan to record the mysteries of the Monarch butterfly.

Together with his wife Norah, Urquhart founded the Insect Migration Association, enlisting thousands of volunteers across North America to tag hundreds of thousands of butterflies to track their migration route. In 1975 they eventually discovered that the millions of butterflies were migrating to central Mexico each winter.

Backed by the Mexican government, “The Flight of the Butterflies” opens in select Mexican cinemas on October 12. A date has yet to be set for Guadalajara, but a showing in Plaza Galerias’ IMAX cinema seems likely.

Did you know?

The two butterfly sanctuaries that are open to the public in Michoacan are the Santuario de Sierra de Chincua and Santuario El Rosario. Both are located near the town of Angangueo.  The sanctuaries are open from mid-November through March.

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