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Warm & Cold Weather Butterfly Release Instructions

Welcome to the world of Ready to Release Butterflies! Your anticipation to explore the box and catch a glimpse of your butterflies is completely understandable. However, before you dive in,  please take a moment to carefully read and follow these valuable instructions to ensure the well-being of your delicate friends.


Caterpillar – Build a Painted Raising Kit – Release Instructions 

This is relevant only if you have nurtured painted lady caterpillars and allowed them to hatch within your net cage for eventual release. If you have purchased Butterflies For Release, please consult the details provided further below.

Choose a calm and sunny day for the release, as butterflies are more active in warm weather. Select a location with plenty of flowers, as butterflies are attracted to nectar. Release butterflies 1 hour after sunrise and at least 1 hour before sunset. 

Gently unzip the net cage. Allow the butterflies some time to acclimate to their surroundings. They may take a moment to flutter around, orient themselves, and gather their strength before taking flight. Refrain from handling the butterflies directly. While butterflies are delicate, the oils and substances on our skin can be harmful to them.

In the wild, painted lady butterflies have a short lifespan of approximately two weeks. This lifespan is shortened if they remain in the net cages after hatching. We encourage you to release the butterflies within 1-3 days of hatching, weather permitting.

Butterfly for Release – Release Instructions 

This is relevant only if you ordered Butterflies For Release. If you have purchased Caterpillar – Build a Painted Lady Raising Kit, please consult the details provided further above in this blog post.

  1. Arrival and Inspection:
  • Your butterflies are shipped in a cool, dark container to mimic a hibernation-like state, a standard practice worldwide and the most humane shipping method. 
  • Upon arrival, inspect the package for any physical damage and document it with pictures if necessary.
  1. Unveiling the Box:
  • Unzip the insulated container to reveal a box surrounded by ice packs.
  • Place thawed ice packs in the freezer.
  • Place the box containing butterflies in the fridge. DO NOT PUT THE BUTTERFLIES IN THE FREEZER.
  1. Awakening Your Butterflies/Preparing for Release:
  • Approximately 30 minutes before release, remove the box from the fridge and let it reach room temperature.
  • The butterflies will awaken from their hibernation-like state during this time, making them ready for release.
  1. Traveling with butterflies
  • In the event you are traveling with your butterflies before release, the ice packs from your freezer will be needed to maintain their temperature until approximately 30 minutes before their release.
  1. Mass Release Consideration:
  1. Individual Packaging:
  • Each butterfly is individually packaged in a triangular container within the main box. Within the triangular container, you will find a triangular paper envelope, containing the butterfly
  • This method is used to safely ship butterflies, and allows for the individual release of each butterfly if desired.
  1. Butterfly Care:
  • Before being placed in their individual protective envelope boxes, each butterfly is carefully fed, misted, and exercised.
  • If released within a day or so of arrival, the butterflies require minimal care, as they arrive ready to be released.
  • To learn how to feed your butterflies, check out our document detailing butterfly care and feeding instructions
  1. Weather-Dependent Release:
  • Release of your butterflies is weather dependent
  • Optimal release temperature is 17 degrees Celsius and above.
  • Colder releases are possible and safe, however, you will have to ensure the butterflies are in an environment of at least 20 degrees Celsius prior to release.
  1. Distribution and Additional Resources:
  • You will know your butterflies are awake and ready to be released when you hear scratching and movement sounds.
  • Distribute triangular containers to participants.
  • Optionally, explore our blog for Poems and Release Readings you can use.

Although not common, if any triangular container does not have these sounds, place the triangular container aside and carefully inspect it prior to handing it out.

  1. Releasing the Butterfly:
  • Remove the rubber band from the top of the triangular container. Within this container, you will find another triangular paper container
  • Unfold the corners of the inner triangular paper container to reveal the butterfly.
  1. Flight:
  • If warm enough, the butterfly will instantly take flight.
  • If still warming up, it may sit on your finger or bask in the sun until ready.
  • Please take note, in hotter temperatures, the butterflies require less time to warm up, however, in extremely hot weather, they could get overheated.
  1. Cold Weather Release Tips:
  • For temperatures below 16 degrees Celsius, keep butterflies in a warm room (around 22 degrees Celsius) for as long as possible before release.
  • If conducting a ceremony or doing a reading before release. Please ensure it’s in a warm room. In certain circumstances, a space heater may be required to ensure the room temperature is at least 22 degrees Celsius.
  • In extreme weather, consider rescheduling or waiting for conditions to improve.

With these instructions, you’re set for a memorable butterfly release! Enjoy the magic of these beautiful creatures taking flight. 🦋✨

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