Faqs/Policies

OUR PROMISE AND GUARANTEE

We promise to work with you to the best of our ability and to accommodate any special requests you may have.  We promise to provide you with high quality, hand selected, healthy caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies from our facility.

Chase 'N Butterflies guarantees that our caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies will arrive alive! Because Mother Nature plays a role in the life of a butterfly, we may at times throughout the year experience a shortage with our caterpillars/chrysalides/ butterflies that is beyond our control.  We will contact you if such a problem arises, so that adjustments can be made to your order.  Please note that we do have other suppliers we can contact, and will work our hardest to fill your complete order! 

Because we do not have control over the food, environment, handling, or other issues at your specific location, as well as in your rearing setup, Chase 'N Butterflies cannot guarantee the life of your caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies beyond their arrival.  Please read and follow all care instructions carefully!  Please contact us with any and all questions, and we would be glad to answer your questions.

OUR GUARANTEE:  We guarantee that your caterpillars/chrysalis/butterflies were alive and healthy, as well as safely packaged when they left Chase'NButterflies, and that they will arrive to your destination alive.  We cannot guarantee, however, that they will thrive after you receive them.  As they are insects, there are circumstances that are simply beyond our control.  While success with live insects such as caterpillars/chrysalis/butterflies is not always predictable, it has been our experience that provided you follow the simple instructions included with your order, you will have a positive experience.

  • When caterpillars are shipped, we cannot guarantee what size they will be when they arrive to you.
  • We cannot guarantee that all caterpillars will survive to pupation.
  • We cannot guarantee that all caterpillars will pupate into chrysalis at the same time.
  • We cannot guarantee that all butterflies will emerge at the same time.
  • The majority if not all of your caterpillars/chrysalis sold individually or as a Painted Lady kit will emerge successfully as butterflies, provided you follow the simple instructions included with your order.
  • In order to keep our cost low, we do not replace caterpillars/chrysalis/butterflies unless they DO NOT arrive alive.  If this is the case, we must be contacted immediately (within 4 hours) upon receiving and inspecting your order if there is a problem, and a date stamped photo must be provided.  With today's technology and online services, we are able to track the time and date that your order was delivered to you.
  • Replacement caterpillars/chrysalis/butterflies WILL NOT BE RESHIPPED IF WE ARE NOT CONTACTED IMMEDIATELY (WITHIN 4 HOURS) upon receiving and inspecting your order, as well as sending along a date stamped picture showing the problem. 
  • We have hundreds of satisfied customers all over the U.S. who reorder from us year after year because they have been so happy with the products we offer.

INTERSTATE SHIPPING PERMITS

If caterpillars/chrysalis/butterflies are shipped across state lines, it is under PPQ-526 permit from the USDA.  This permit allows for live outdoor release in the destination state.  A copy of USDA permits are available upon request.

ORDERING ASSORTED BUTTERFLIES FOR RELEASE

We will do our best to include as large an assortment of butterflies as possible. The assortment is dependent on what stock we have available as well as what the USDA allows to be shipped into your state.  

PLACING AN ORDER/PAYMENTS

Place your order for caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies as soon as you know your desired delivery date so that we can schedule and plan for your order.  Orders must be paid in full at time of ordering.  

BUTTERFLY CANCELLATION POLICY

Please contact me personally if you must cancel your order. Cancellations must be made prior to 30 days before scheduled event.  In the event of cancellation, a refund will be issued through PayPal minus a 20% nonrefundable service fee.  Because our butterflies are raised and reserved specifically to fill your order, refunds will not be issued for cancellations made less than 30 days before scheduled event.

PACKAGING/SHIPPING CATERPILLARS/CHRYSALIDES

Chrysalides are shipped Monday through Wednesday Fed Ex 2nd Day Air in order to ensure safe delivery by Friday. Butterflies are shipped Monday through Thursday Fed Ex overnight in order to ensure safe delivery by Friday. Painted Lady kits (those on artificial diet) are shipped for home delivery USPS Monday through Wednesday in order to ensure safe delivery by Saturday. You will be notified when your order has been shipped.  Painted Lady kits are shipped for school delivery USPS Monday and Tuesday only in order to ensure safe delivery by Friday.

PLEASE NOTE!!! We cannot ship butterflies to arrive on Sunday, Monday, or the day of or directly following a holiday.  Please contact us to see what can be done in this situation.

Before shipping, all butterflies are packaged individually in an insulated box with ice pack to keep them cool and guarantee their safe arrival.  The insulated cool environment within the box keeps the butterflies calm and inactive during shipping to help prevent against damage to their wings.  Once taken out of the cold environment, they will become active.  Please see instructions included with your shipment.

Make sure someone is home to accept your package.  Chase 'N Butterflies, Fed Ex, and USPS are NOT RESPONSIBLE for any package left outside unattended for any period of time.  This is especially important in the warmer months!  Our replacement guarantee is only valid for Fed Ex packages that have been signed for!!! Signature will be required for orders totally over $200 excluding shipping.  It is your responsibility to make sure someone will be at address specified to sign for package.

NOTE:  Once a package is delivered by Fed Ex/USPS and no signature was obtained, Chase 'N Butterflies will no longer be responsible for the package.  We do not offer refunds for packages that fed Ex shows as being delivered without a signature under any circumstance whatsoever!  This information is traceable through fed Ex records.

If your package is delayed for any reason, and that delay results in your butterflies missing your scheduled event, and Chase 'N Butterflies is directly responsible for that delay, a refund will be issued.  If the shipping company is responsible for the delay, a claim will be filed, and you will be reimbursed accordingly.  We do not offer refunds for weather related conditions that may lead to cancellation of events, delay in shipping, or which prohibit butterflies from flying such as rain, hail, snow, high wind, or darkness.

REMEMBER, it is imperative that Chase 'N Butterflies is notified of the exact date and time of your scheduled event, as well as any changes that are made, so that we can schedule your delivery accordingly.

CARING FOR YOUR LIVE CATERPILLARS

  • When your caterpillars arrive, inspect them immediately, and contact me within 4 hours if there are any problems (chasenbutterflies@cox.net); a date stamped photo is required
  • Your container should be kept indoors, upright at all times, out of direct sunlight, and away from heating or air conditioning vents
  • Keep the lid on your container at all times!
  • DO NOT EVER move your caterpillars if they ARE NOT moving their back legs on their own, as this is a sign that they are molting (growing out of their skin); moving them at this time will most likely kill them; they will molt about four times during their time as a caterpillar
  • When molting, you will usually notice that they have crawled up to the lid or are hanging on the side of the container; they will stop eating for a few days and then will crawl out of their skin; they will then turn around and eat their old skin; this process usually takes a few days
  • If at any time you need to move your caterpillars, take a small, clean, dry paint brush or Q-tip and tickle their back legs; if they move along freely it is safe to move them; avoid touching them with your fingers; gently encourage them up onto the paint brush or Q-tip and transfer them that way
  • If not being raised on artificial diet, be sure to feed them enough fresh plant material (specific to their species) daily to prevent them from running out of food; running out of food puts stress on the caterpillars and this can cause disease and/or starvation which will kill them; as well, cannibalism is common in starving caterpillars 
  • Make sure their plant material is FRESH, CLEAN, AND DRY!  Plants treated with insecticides at any time can be deadly to your caterpillars.  Rinse and dry all plant material thoroughly several times before feeding them to your caterpillar. Refunds will not be issued for caterpillars who die as a result of a chemically treated food source  
  • The size of your butterfly can depend on the amount of food the caterpillar eats; if a caterpillar runs out of food, often it could result in a smaller, unhealthy butterfly
  • If mold starts to develop at any time in the container, it must be cleaned out!; mold can be the result of wet food, overcrowding, or temperature fluctuations
  • If necessary to clean out your container (which is rare), gently remove all old plant material as well as caterpillars and temporarily place them in a clean container or on a paper towel; WARNING: Watch then carefully as they will crawl away!; Remember...DO NOT MOVE THEM IF THEY ARE MOLTING!; clean out all old material (frass and plants) left in the container with a paper towel, and then rinse the container with a diluted bleach solution and dry thoroughly; DO NOT USE SOAP!
  • Once done growing, your caterpillars will crawl to top of container and hang in a "J"; it is important you do not disturb them at this time; after 1 or 2 days they will then form their chrysalis and harden; if they should fall to the bottom of the cup or habitat, wait for them to form a hardened chrysalis before inspecting or moving; they may still be viable
  • They will remain a chrysalis for about 7-14 days (depending on species)

CARING FOR YOUR CATERPILLAR CUPS W/ARTIFICIAL DIET (PAINTED LADIES)

  • When your caterpillar cup arrives, inspect it immediately but do not take off the lid!  Contact me within 4 hours if there are any problems (chasenbutterflies@cox.net); date stamped photo requiredl 
  • Your caterpillar cup should be kept indoors, upright at all times, out of direct sunlight, and away from heating or air conditioning vents
  • Keep the lid on at all times as you watch them grow and move through their clear cup
  • Do not feed the caterpillars or give them water; artificial diet is all they need
  • As the caterpillars grow (about 7-14 days), they will spin a silk webbing for their protection
  • Their waste or "frass" will collect at the bottom of the cup; YOU SHOULD NOT NEED TO DUMP IT OUT!
  • Once done growing, your caterpillars will crawl to the top of the cup and hang in a "J"; it is important that you do not disturb them at this time
  • After 1 or 2 days they will then form their chrysalis and harden; if they should fall to the bottom of the cup or habitat, wait for them to form a hardened chrysalis before inspecting or moving; they may still be viable
  • They will remain a chrysalis for about 7-10 days

CARING FOR YOUR CHRYSALIDES

  • Once all your caterpillars have formed their chrysalides and have hardened, you can safely open the lid to the cup; if they should fall to the bottom of the cup or habitat, wait for them to form a hardened chrysalis before inspecting or moving; they may still be viable
  • Carefully open the lid and remove the netting w/chrysalides attached
  • You may notice them shaking which is a normal protective mechanism
  • Gently remove the netting and transfer it to a growing habitat (available on our website)
  • Pin the netting to the top or high on the side of the growing habitat
  • This growing habitat will provide them with an open area to emerge as butterflies
  • You can spray your chrysalides gently with clean water once every few days, but DO NOT SATURATE THEM!
  • PLEASE NOTE...your rearing containers must be disinfected between each set of caterpillar/chrysalide/butterfly rearing with a diluted bleach solution
  • Flea and tick prevention products such as Frontline and Advantage can be deadly to caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies; if used on pets in your home, please keep the animals away from your caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies; be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after coming in contact with pets before handling your caterpillars/chrysalides/butterflies 

CARING FOR YOUR BUTTERFLIES

  • Once your butterflies emerge you may notice a red stain at the bottom and/or sides of the habitat; this is meconium from their wings; it will not permanently stain!
  • Soak a cotton ball with Gatorade and place it at the bottom of the habitat
  • You can also give them a small piece of fruit such as watermelon or an orange slice
  • Flowers are fine too as long as they have not been sprayed with pesticides

TRANSFERRING BUTTERFLIES TO A RELEASE BOX/HABITAT

  • Your butterflies will arrive "sleeping" snugly in individual envelopes
  • It is the customer's responsibility to provide the release box unless ordered from Chase 'N Butterflies
  • These envelopes are packed in an insulated box with an ice pack to keep them cool
  • We mimic a cool spring or fall night, and ship your butterflies "asleep" until you are ready to transfer them to a box/habitat or release them into the environment right from the envelope
  • Transfer them into a release box/habitat in a small room with the door closed (like a bathroom) before allowing them to warm up to room temperature.  They will be less active and easier to transfer
  • If they show signs of waking up, just place them back into their cold environment for 5-10 minutes and repeat the process
  • While they are still cold gently open the envelope and remove your butterflies (with wings closed) from their envelopes with your thumb and index finger and place them in the release box/habitat and close lid

RELEASE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Take your habitat filled with your butterflies outdoors to release them
  • They should be released at a temperature of about 70 degrees, but no lower than 60 degrees, and at least one hour before sundown so that they can find shelter for the night
  • Do not release them in the rain!
  • When ready to release your butterflies, open your habitat and enjoy watching your butterflies discovering their new world!

USDA RULES

The USDA governs the 9 caterpillar/chrysalide/butterfly species that can be shipped between states, and Chase 'N Butterflies holds permits for each state, and follows all USDA regulations...NO EXCEPTIONS!  We only ship Gulf Fritillaries, Monarchs, Mourning Cloaks, Red Admiral, and Painted Ladies outside the state of CA.

MONARCHS ONLY - States west of the Continental Divide will receive Western Monarchs; all others will have Eastern Monarchs drop shipped from a butterfly farm on the eastern side of the Continental Divide as the USDA does not allow shipment of Monarchs across the Continental Divide.

USDA GUIDELINES BY SPECIES (that we ship) - GF Gulf Fritillary; M Monarch; MC Mourning Cloak; RA Red Admiral; PL Painted Lady

***Additional requirements apply

  • Alabama  GF, M, RA, PL
  • Alaska  MC, RA, PL
  • Arizona  GL, MC, RA, PL
  • Arkansas  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • California  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Colorado  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Connecticut  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Delaware  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Florida GF, M, RA, PL, APL
  • Georgia  GF, M, RA, PL
  • Hawaii NONE
  • Idaho  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Illinois  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Indiana  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Iowa  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Kansas  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Kentucky  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Louisiana  GF, M, RA, PL
  • Maine  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Maryland  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Massachusetts  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Michigan  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Minnesota  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Mississippi  GF, M, RA, PL
  • Missouri  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Montana  MC, RA, PL
  • Nebraska  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Nevada  M, MC, RA, PL
  • New Hampshire  M, MC, RA, PL
  • New Jersey  M, MC, RA, PL
  • New Mexico  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • New York***  M, MC, RA, PL
  • North Carolina  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • North Dakota  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Ohio  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Oklahoma  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Oregon  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Pennsylvania  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Puerto Rico NONE
  • Rhode Island  M, MC, RA, PL
  • South Carolina  GF, M, RA, PL
  • South Dakota  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Tennessee  GF, M, MC, RA, PL 
  • Texas  GF, M, RA, PL
  • Utah  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Vermont  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Virginia  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • Washington State***  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Washington DC  GF, M, MC, RA, PL
  • West Virginia  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Wisconsin  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Wyoming  M, MC, RA, PL
  • Virgin Islands NONE
  • Guam NONE