Getting Started Raising Butterflies (Obtaining Pairs)
Pairs of some species can be obtained from the wild. Of course you will need to learn the differences between male and female of the species you want to breed. In actual practice, though, if you find a female flying or nectaring, she has probably already mated. You will then need to provide her with a plant suitable for her larvae to feed on, and will need to cover the plant with material sufficient to keep her on the plant, but with room enough to fly. Nylon screening or landscape fabric is adequate for this purpose. On butterfly farms large enclosures house numerous butterflies and plantings of host plants.
Look at one of my posts on my experiences in raising some of our beautiful native silk moths to see an alternative approach that works well with those. In these moths, the female “calls in” the male to mate with her. Therefore, you only need to obtain the cocoon of a female, either found or purchased from a breeder. I do occasionally have excess cocoons for sale.
Those who would like to get started raising butterflies with a little help will find that there are some helpful items available through Amazon to assist. A few of the items which may be of interest are displayed below. You can turn the carousel with the directional buttons and display additional information by clicking on any individual products.
Keep an eye out for our Storefront page as well. From time to time, we may be offering our locally raised specimens when they are available and can be safely shipped.