Loews Ventana Canyon, Tucson, Ariz., is taking its work of preserving its desert surroundings to another level, by becoming the first Arizona resort to feature certified butterfly and desert tortoise exhibits.
“This is just one more way we are embracing nature on our property and giving guests an up-close-and-personal experience with our local flora and fauna,” says Brian Johnson, Managing Director. “In addition to enhancing our beautiful surroundings, these new features offer something that’s unique, educational and fun for visitors, to help them connect to Tucson’s wild side.”
The 1,500-sq. ft. butterfly exhibit, certified by the National Butterfly Association as a national butterfly garden and a monarch flyway, features 20 types of plants, to attract more than 60 species of butterflies. The resort partnered with the Southeast Arizona Butterfly Association to develop the garden and identify plant species, such as Mojave milkweed, Arizona foldwing and Arizona milkweed, that are most enticing to butterflies.
In addition to the garden, two desert tortoises now reside at the resort in its new 800-sq. ft. tortoise exhibit, certified by the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum. The exhibit, built by the resort’s landscaping staff in consultation with the museum and the Arizona Game and Fish Department, is part of the museum’s Tortoise Adoption Program, to benefit the welfare of captive and wild tortoises and turtles.