Mass Audubon has ongoing children's programs which maim and kill butterflies. They encourage NETTING and HANDLING of butterflies. They claim it's good for the children to have a "hands-on" encounter with nature, and that butterflies when "handled properly" suffer no harm. This is nonsense! Anyone with common sense knows that if one nets and then tries to touch a butterfly, it is very likely that the butterfly will be injured, even if the intent is to finally release the "specimens". That colorful "dust" on a person's fingers are the butterflies scales. They need them! Mass Audubon also sells cheap, injury prone NETS at their "gift" shops, including the gift shop at their main location in Lincoln. This should stop, now.
So what does Mass Audubon have to say? Ask them yourself, and maybe they will change this malignant policy. Mass Audubon should be the one asking everyone not to touch these delicate creatures; and instead to relish the beauty of their nature without harm.
Contact your local "sanctuary" or Mass Audubon's main headquarters and express your opinion on NETTING butterflies. Let us try to make Mass Audubon the conservation organization it should be.
Below is a letter I sent to the Chairman of the Board and the society's response, indicating that they will not change their "programs".
Gregory S. Dysart, AIA
The response letter from Mass Audubon's Vice President Gary Clayton states "I understand you have visited a number of Mass Audubon sanctuaries to inquire about or observe their programs". This is blatantly false. I have not nor would not visit any Mass Audubon sanctuaries to observe children's programs. I have only reacted to information sent to me from Mass Audubon and seen on their public web pages.
I did run into a "program" group of netters on the Great Blue Hill in Canton, and was told when I asked that it was a Mass Audubon group. I contacted the Blue Hills Mass Audubon
center and was told the group was not part of the Blue Hills programs but must have been from another Mass Audubon sanctuary.
The statement quoted above is not correct, slanderous and totally misleading. Mr. Clayton owes me a written apology!
August 5, 2012
The latest posting is a letter sent to the new President, Henry George Tepper to make him aware of the ongoing issue.
January 20, 2013