Butterfly breeding can be a very enjoyable hobby. Children especially love to watch the transformation from caterpillars to butterflies. It is quite fascinating to watch the ova become larvae, the larvae to become caterpillars, the caterpillars to encase themselves in their cocoons and finally emerge as butterflies. Breeding butterflies at home is simple if you have the proper equipment. Butterfly breeding kits, also known as butterfly farms, can be purchased online from insect breeders. They will include several pupae for you to use to begin the process.
Monarchs are especially popular because of their bright colors. Females lay their eggs on milkweed plants. She only lays her eggs on this host plant because that is what her babies eat. Butterfly breeding kits will usually include a milkweed plant, milkweed leaves or milkweed seeds that you can plant at home. After the first couple of weeks, the larvae continuously gorge themselves on the plants. Therefore, it’s important to have several healthy potted plants available. If the plants are too large for your caterpillar’s home, several clippings can be used.
Painted Lady butterflies do not require milkweed plants. This can make them particularly easy to care for. A Painted Lady butterfly breeding kit may include a growth medium for them to eat.
After the butterflies emerge from their cocoons, they can be released at this point or kept. But if you keep them, they will need a larger container to be able to fly. The breeding process can then be started all over again. They will be looking for a mate within 3-4 hours of emerging! Many breeding kits will include a tall, round, collapsible house made of special netting in which to keep your butterflies.
Naturally, butterflies love nectar. You can provide them with fresh cut flowers or make your own nectar using honey and water. They also enjoy sipping the juice from fresh fruits. Ripe bananas are a favorite!
Breeding butterflies at home can be both a rewarding and educational experience. Your insect breeder can provide all the necessary equipment, supplies and care instructions to help ensure your success.