It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane – Butterflies for Families!

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane – Butterflies for Families!

May 28, 2022
How can you tell a moth from a butterfly? Meet butterflies and learn the answers to all your butterfly questions as we explore Muddy Hollow.

In this introduction to butterflies you’ll meet 8 -12 species from different families (Swallowtails, Brushfoots, Gossamer Wings, Pierids, and Skippers) and have a chance to observe behaviors like nectaring, puddling, and possibly mating or egg laying.

You’ll learn host plants and nectar plants for various species, and which have adapted to non-native host plants. Find out the best places in Marin to go to see less common butterflies, like our California state butterfly, the California Dogface.

This class is excellent preparation for the Marin Butterfly Count in June which is the butterfly community’s equivalent to the Christmas Bird Count. At the end of the day you’ll be ready to continue the fascinating study of butterflies on your own.

This is a program designed for children/youth to attend with an adult chaperone. It’s an opportunity for families to learn together as we introduce your family to the butterfly families!

Note: This is NOT a collecting class. Collecting, or even netting butterflies, is not permitted at Point Reyes National Seashore without a research permit. All butterflies we visit with are returned to their habitat unharmed.

Wendy Dreskin has been teaching the popular class Meandering in Marin at College of Marin since 1998 and Point Reyes Field Seminars since 2005. In recognition of her work inspiring both children and adults, she was awarded the Terwilliger Environmental Award and inducted into the Marin Women’s Hall of Fame.

Photo Credit: William Dreskin


-We will be meeting at the Muddy Hollow Trail parking lot

– Please arrive 10-15 minutes early to check in

– Refunds available for all classes 7 days in advance of the start date, after 7 days and before 2 days, participants can credit their class for a future date. All requests before 48 hours in advance will be declined. For COVID cancellation policy, see below.

– Please follow the parking instructions for the facility used that day

– Please provide an email you check regularly for updates and reminders about your class

– Registration is required online prior to the event in order to maintain class sizes

– Sales end 48 hours before the start date.

– Waitlists are available when the class sells out

What to Bring:

Day Pack

Lunch Bag

Warm Variable Weather Clothing

Hiking Shoes

Water Bottle

Notebook and Pen/Field Journal

Eventbrite Confirmation Email

Binoculars (Optional)

Camera (Optional)

About the PRNSA Field Institute:

The PRNSA Field Institute offers hands-on environmental education classes throughout the year that foster enjoyment of Point Reyes National Seashore. Our classes are led by expert instructors, who take you out of your everyday life and into the natural world. We host a variety of classes about the arts and sciences and have something for everyone. You can reach the Field Institute at (415) 663-1200 x304 or by email at

Interested in becoming a member of PRNSA? Click Here!

Interested in becoming a PRNSA Field Institute facilitator? Want to take classes for FREE while helping out a great cause? Give us a call!

Are you an outdoor educator or artist who would like to teach a PRNSA Field Institute class? Shoot us an Email!

For any questions, please email us at

COVID-19 Field Institute Guidelines

In accordance with Marin County and CDC guidelines for public health, we will require all participants to respect the following COVID-19 procedures:

• Perform a health self-check before coming to class using the CDC Symptoms of Coronavirus as a guide

• Do not attend class if you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, suspect you have been exposed to the virus, or are suffering from any other flu-like or respiratory illness.

• Participants exhibiting signs of respiratory illness may be asked to leave class

During class all participants will be required to do the following

• Masks are optional outdoors for fully vaccinated individuals, but we recommend continuing to maintain a 4’-6’ distance from other participants or wearing a mask if gathered closely together

• Unvaccinated individuals are required to wear a face covering at all times

• Masks are optional indoors for vaccinated participants but strongly recommended

• Bring your own food and water

• We reserve the right to modify requirements as recommended by NPS regulations or local county health orders at the time of class

NOTE: Refund policy exceptions will be made for participants cancelling last minute due to COVID-19 infection or symptoms. Please contact us in this case.

Thank you for your continuing cooperation in following these guidelines to help keep everyone safe.