Our butterfly larvae arrived on Wed. We were hoping it was the tadpoles, but they were delayed a week. So time to quickly learn what to do with butterfly larvae. Fortunately, they came with pretty clear directions.
The larvae arrive in one container and we had the job of separating them into individual containers.
The first step is to mix up their food source ( 'nutrient'). It arrives as a powder. You just add water and mix it until it is the consistency of cookie dough. That step was fairly easy.
Next, you put a small amount in each of the small containers. We put about a teaspoon in each one. Some had a bit more than others. Then we pressed the nutrient into the bottom of the container.
Our larvae came with a small paint brush which you use to move the larvae from the large container into their individual small containers. Larvae are easily hurt and the paint brush is suppose to be the best way to handle them at this stage.
They warn you that there could be a few extra larvae (in case of losses while shipping). If there are extra larvae, you can put two in a small container.
We started with the containers that had the least nutrient and put one in each of those. As we got closer to the end, we figured we would put two into the containers that had more nutrient. That worked fairly well until we discovered that we had enough larvae to put two in every container!
It took a bit a time, both of the kids doing some, and me putting the last few into their containers, but we finally finished that job.
Now they are all in their little containers, happily eating their 'nutrient'.
Here's what one of the containers looked like
This picture was taken a couple of days later.
Read more about raising Painted Lady Butterflies.