Callaway Gardens

We travel to Pine Mountain to spin Fast Forward’s “Wheel of Information,” getting all the news on Callaway Gardens and how it came to be. Thanks to the experts, including the Manager of the Day Butterfly Center, we get a peek into the fields of Zoology and Entomology, and learn more about butterflies than we ever thought we'd would. Please take our word for it. Some of it is Frass-related. We warned you!

Butterfly vs. Moth

Butterfly vs. Moth

Learn the differences between butterflies and moths.



A peek into the field of Entomology.



A definition and explanation of frass, the debris or excrement produced by insects.



A peek into the field of Zoology.

Presidential Pathways

Special Thanks To

Rachel Crumbley, Town of Pine Mountain


VO: Today, on Fast Forward, we'll be visiting the world famous Day Butterfly Center at Callaway Gardens.

Uh...these are fish.

VO: Okay, we've got work to do.


VO: Welcome to another episode of Fast Forward. We're spending the day at Callaway Gardens, twenty five hundred acres of walk-able trails and breath-taking scenery located in Pine Mountain, Georgia. This place provides a wide range of family activities, and staffs up to 1,000 employees-depending on the season.

And we're also playing America's hottest new game show-

MULTIPLE VOICES: Wheel-Of-Information!!!

VO: That's right! But before we do, let's get a little more background on this beautiful place. Rachel?

RACHEL: Callaway Gardens was created in 1952 by Cason and VA Callaway-After Cason had a great career in the textile industry, he created Callaway Gardens as a place to get away. But he decided it was too beautiful and decided to open it to the public.

VO: Great start! And with that in mind, let's play-

MULTIPLE VOICES: Wheel-Of-Information!!!

VO: Starting to think that could get annoying. In any case, let's get a few of the Callaway Gardens' employees to tell us about themselves.

MARK: Hey, I'm Mark. I'm the birds of prey specialist here at Callaway Gardens.

TEAONDRA: I'm Teaondra. I'm one of the first people you get when you call the 800 Callaway number. I'm here to answer any questions about the gardens.

MICHAEL: Hi, I'm Michael. I'm the manager of the Day Butterfly Center.

TRACY: I'm a horticulture supervisor and I take care of the butterfly center, and some of the trails.

CHRIS: My name's Chris Smith. I'm the executive chef at Callaway Gardens. And I am the king of the kitchen.


VO: Okay. Those sound like cool jobs. How'd you get them?

TRACY: I didn't see myself having a behind-the-desk job. I wanted to be out and about and enjoying nature. So that's why I chose this field.

MARK: It's been a lot of volunteer work to get me here. I volunteered at the southeastern raptor center for about 3 years.

MICHAEL: I wanted to work some place where I could educate the people or take care of animals. So I've kind of got both of that here in this job. My degree is in zoology.

VO: Which leads to the question-exactly what is zoology?

MICHAEL: Zoology is basically the study of animals. And that degree can go to a lot of different places. A lot of people in the medical field start off in zoology. Of course anybody who wants to work with animals, zoology is a good place to start...

VO: And to be clear, entomology is the scientific study of insects. Right, Michael?

MICHAEL: That's correct. Butterflies are an insect, but insects are animals.

VO: Okay. And while we've got you on the wheel, tell us about butterflies. What would surprise us?

MICHAEL: Most butterflies spend anywhere from 2-25 weeks as a caterpillar. But almost every butterfly will only spend 2-3 weeks as an adult butterfly flying around-that's something that a lot of people don't realize, because you see this very bright, beautiful butterfly. And really that's just a last small part of its life. If you were to ask a butterfly to identify itself, it would probably identify itself as a caterpillar.

VO: And then it would make a handsome living as a talking butterfly. By the way, what's the difference between a butterfly and a moth?

MICHAEL: One of the big differences is the third stage of the life; the pupa stage...a butterfly has a chrysalis, where the moths have cocoons. The main difference though, anatomical difference in the adult stage is their antennae. A butterfly's antennae are long and skinny, very cylindrical, very fine. Whereas a moth's antennae are very wide.

VO: Yeah...uh...I've noticed that. Man, this guy really knows his stuff. Let's see if I can stump him on-


VO: Yeah, I told you that would get old. Here's the question:


Do butterflies poop?

MICHAEL: In the adult stage, butterflies do not. They do all their eating and growing in the caterpillar stage. And in the caterpillar stage they poop a lot. Insect pooh is called frass. But in the adult stage the only thing they're consuming is nectar, which is sugar water. It's just enough to give them a little energy throughout the day. So they don't produce any waste product as adults.

VO: That would be sooooo convenient.

MICHAEL: It would.

VO: Ok, we've gotten off track. So, how much science do you use around here?

MICHAEL: Everything I learned in science class I still use.

VO: Yeah, I figured you did-you and your frass!

Anyone else?

CHRIS: I use science all the time. I have to know that when I'm making vinaigrette, that the oil and the vinegar molecules have to emulsify to stick together, or they'll separate.

TEAONDRA: Actually seeing the reports and some of the stuff I saw in school, and said I'm never going to see this in the work world, I'm seeing that in the work world will see this stuff again in life.

VO: Good to know. And I'll make the last question an easy one. Tell me what you like about your jobs?

MICHAEL: I get to work with everything I've ever wanted to work with. I get to work with plants, butterflies, and insects. And I get to educate visitors, which is incredibly rewarding. The thing I'm most fascinated with-the bugs and creepy crawlies, I get to work with those every day and I absolutely love it.

MARK: I landed the job and my parents said, well, if you've found your hobby and you're getting paid to do your hobby, then you are happy. And that's kind of what I found, is that I'm doing my hobby, and that makes me happy every day. So find your hobby and get paid to do it.

TEAONDRA: I've never really worked at a place that you would come to off duty. I come back to Callaway on my off days and hang out. So it's good to have a job that you love.

VO: That's kind of my hobby-finding jobs people love. And I'm not bad at it...thanks to places like Callaway Gardens. And we'll find even more of them on the next episode of Fast Forward! See you then!

This content was developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. However, this content does not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.