On the Trail of the Monarch Butterfly

March 21 to June 18


Through microphotographic images and spectacular aerial photographs, join Mexican filmmaker and pilot Francisco “Vico” Gutiérrez as he follows the monarch’s amazing journey from Montréal, Canada, to the mountains of central Mexico. In his ultralight, decorated with the motif of the monarch butterfly and aptly named Papalotzin (the Aztec word for “small butterfly”), he covered over 6,000 kilometres in 90 hours of flight over 72 days.

Vico’s adventure to raise awareness about butterfly habitat conservation became a true voyage of discovery as he followed the extreme challenges faced by monarch butterflies during their annual migration. With a lifespan of only about two months, no one monarch can complete the entire trip on its own — it takes up to four generations of these beautiful creatures to cover the entire distance of the migration.

Produced by the Canada Aviation and Space Museum in collaboration with the Embassy of Mexico. It exemplifies true teamwork, both in its creation and in its story.

We gratefully acknowledge that funding for the On the Trail of the Monarch Butterfly exhibition was provided by the federal government through the Museums Assistance Program Exhibition Circulation Fund.