1) I love this idea! How do I proceed?
breed and ship butterflies for weddings all throughout the year. It
must be 55°
or warmer and (preferably) sunny for the butterflies to fly well when
released. To help determine if the climate is right in your area during
your event date, click to check Average
Temperature then place your order online to get the special Internet
Pricing. You will be asked for your wedding date during the ordering
process. We accept all major credit cards. You will receive an automated
email confirmation immediately upon submission of your order and then a 2nd
email confirmation within 2 to 48 hours when a representative has reviewed
and scheduled your order. Rush orders will be reviewed within 2 hours. The
live butterflies will arrive the day before the wedding via Overnight
delivery with easy instructions.
2) How far in advance should I
place my order? We are your last minute specialists! However,
sometimes we get completely booked for popular event dates, so we
recommend you place your order as soon as possible to avoid any last
minute disappointments. To ensure a reservation, try to place your order
at least 4 weeks in advance for events from March through September, since
these are the most popular months for butterfly releases at weddings.
However, we can frequently fill last minute orders - even the next day!
You can call us at 888-441-4908 to check availability of butterflies for a
specific date if you are concerned.
3) How many
butterflies should I order? Most
purchases are for 2 to 3 dozen butterflies. Some clients pass out the
Release Box that each butterfly is shipped in to guests, so that
individual guests can each release a butterfly. Others use a portion of
the butterflies for the closest family member to do a Mass Release from a box,
cage or basket,
and then select certain guests (such as the funeral party and family) to
release individual butterflies from the Release Boxes.
4) When can I do wedding
Butterfly Releases? Monarch Butterflies will only take flight when the
temperature is above 55°
and preferably sunny, but the warmer the weather
the better the release! Please check the history of the Average
Temperature for your area to be sure your butterfly release will be a
if I place an order, but then the weather forecast is bad? You have some choices. You can choose to keep the
order and display the beautiful butterflies inside as a centerpiece in a
cage or basket and then release the next day or so when the weather gets
better. You can make your own display Basket (see
instructions below) to set on a table. Or, call us exactly 5 days before
the event, and we will gladly cancel the order and refund the full
purchase amount. We won't penalize you for Mother Nature's indecisions!
6) Can I do wedding butterfly releases
at night? The butterflies must be released prior
to sunset. If it is a warm evening, the butterflies may still fly during
civil twilight, which is up until 20 minutes after the sun sets. To find
the exact time that the sun will set on your wedding date visit the
By Location site. If it is too dark, the butterflies will not fly.
7) How do the butterflies survive shipping?
Each butterfly is carefully placed inside an individual Release Box for
their safety. They are packaged in an insulated box with a
"cool-pack." The cool temperature combined with minimal light
keeps the butterflies calm and naturally inactive during shipping.
Butterflies are sent via Overnight delivery to arrive the day before your
event. Butterflies that will be released from a mass release box or cage
will be shipped in special 'transfer' envelopes designed to keep them safe
in shipping, but are much easier to transfer the butterflies to a
8) What should I do when my butterflies arrive?
Easy instructions on how to care for and release your butterflies will
accompany your order, or click HERE to read
them now. In summary: when they arrive, keep the shipping container in a
cool, dark area so they will remain calm and inactive. Move them to a warm
area an hour before the wedding.
9) What happens to them after
release? The USDA approves monarch butterflies for release all over the continental USA because the butterflies are native to all states. If you have flowers and host plants for the butterflies nearby, they may stay a while or even take up residency for the remainder of the season.
10) Can I make my own Release Basket
so I can release them all at once?
Sure! You can buy
a box or cage from us, or make your own basket.
1) You can pick up a nice wicker basket from Michaels or any craft store
for just a few dollars.
2) Drape tulle (veil material) over the basket and hold it down with a
pretty ribbon tied around the upper part of the base of the basket.
Flowers are a butterfly food source so if you place real flowers in the
basket, they may not want to fly out when released.
3) You can transfer the butterflies into the basket up to 6 hours before
the wedding if you’d like to keep them on display during the event. Make
sure to transfer them at least 1 hour before the event and expose them to
warmth and light (not direct sunlight). The light stimulates the
butterflies and will make them active.
Simple transfer directions will accompany your order, or click HERE
to read them now.
family can then untie the ribbon and release the butterflies to create a
show-stopping flight of beautiful butterflies!
11) What is your guarantee?
Cancellation Policy for Live
(Minimum 10% for any cancellation)
||The Fee Is:
|6+ weeks prior ...
|4-5 weeks prior ...
|3-4 weeks prior ...
|2-3 weeks prior ...
|1-2 weeks prior ...
|0-1 week prior ...
For your benefit, we offer a bad weather
exclusion to the cancellation policy shown above. If the weather is either
too cold or too rainy for a successful butterfly release, you may cancel
up to 4 days prior to your event and receive a full refund, less a 10%
processing fee. The policy, however, is NOT valid for orders larger than 8
dozen butterflies. The forecasted high should be 55 Deg. F or greater.
Showers are OK for releasing butterflies, but heavy rain is not.
We guarantee that you will receive live and healthy butterflies for any
butterfly order of any quantity and delivery location. And for orders of 8
dozen or less, we also guarantee that they will arrive in time for your
event or your money back (up to the value of the butterflies). This
delivery guarantee applies to orders scheduled to arrive the day before
the event and on a weekday; however, the guarantee is void for 'same day'
deliveries and/or SAT deliveries. Our delivery guarantee is also void if
you do not notify us of the missing package by 3 PM the day the shipment
is supposed to arrive. No refunds given for recipient unavailability. The
suggested time of delivery is a commitment time for your area based upon
the FedEx service guide. There are occasional delays with FedEx due to
weather or other 'acts of God.'
Butterfly Care and Release Instructions:
weather butterfly storage instructions: http://www.swallowtailfarms.com/Instructions%20warm.pdf
Cool weather butterfly storage instructions: http://www.swallowtailfarms.com/Instructions%20cool.pdf
Transfer instructions for box, cage or basket: http://www.swallowtailfarms.com/transferinstructions.pdf
instructions for cage: http://www.swallowtailfarms.com/cage%20instructions.pdf
1) WHEN THE BUTTERFLIES ARRIVE:
If you hear some scratching or fluttering inside box, don't worry, it's normal. Open the shipping box and remove the ice pack. Put it into the freezer. Once it has re-frozen, put it back into the box and close the box. Just the ice-pack please, or you’ll have frozen butterflies instead of active healthy ones to release. Store the butterflies in a cool, dark place (like a closet) until ready to transport to the wedding. This keeps the butterflies slightly chilled and dormant until it's time for them to fly! No other care is needed until 2 hours before the event. When transporting the butterflies, do not leave them in a parked car for more than a few minutes, especially if it is a warm day, and keep them in the shade or away from direct sunlight.
2) TO RELEASE BUTTERFLIES FROM THE INDIVIDUAL
Each box already has a single
butterfly in it awaiting flight. Remove the boxes from the cooled shipping
container about 2 to 3 hours prior to the release. This will give them
enough time to warm up. If it is a cool day, then let them sit in the sun
for 20 to 30 minutes. If it is a hot day, then be sure to keep them in the
shade while warming up. When it's time for release, simply pull the two
tabs on the sides and the box will come open.
3) TO RELEASE BUTTERFLIES FROM A MASS RELEASE BOX, CAGE,
or BASKET: You can purchase a
mass release box or cage from us. Or, you can pick up a nice wicker basket
from Michaels or any craft store for just a few dollars. Drape tulle (veil
material) over the basket and hold it down with a pretty ribbon tied
around the upper part of the base of the basket. Flowers are a butterfly
food source so if you place real flowers in the basket, they may not want
to fly out when released. You can transfer the butterflies into the basket
up to 6 hours before the event if you’d like to keep them on display
during the event. Make sure to transfer them at least 2 hours before the
event and expose them to warmth and light (not direct sunlight). The light
stimulates the butterflies and will make them active. If you plan to
transfer them more than 2 hours before, then try to keep them in a cool
dark place so that they will remain inactive.
To transfer the butterflies into your release
basket: first, place the butterflies (while in their transfer
envelopes) in a refrigerator (NOT THE FREEZER!) for 15 to 20 minutes. This
puts them into a natural hibernation state so they are easier to transfer.
Then, open the envelope and turn it upside down inside of the tulle so
that it drops out and into the basket.
Or, you can help the butterfly out by its wings. It does not hurt
the butterfly to touch or hold it gently. It is normal to have some scale
powder on your fingers after picking them up. When all the butterflies are
in, tie the ribbon like you would tie your shoelace (not double knotted)
and you're all done. The bride and groom can untie the ribbon and release
the butterflies to create a show-stopping flight of beautiful butterflies!
WEDDING BUTTERFLY RELEASES:
they emerge from their boxes and/or mass release basket, an appointed
guest can read the words from the American Indian Legend
(below). This can be read before the release to tie the event together. OR
you can write your own dedication to provide a cue for the wedding
butterfly release. Be sure to capture this awesome video
and photo opportunity!
Copy of the Indian Legend
According to an American Indian Legend -
If anyone desires a wish to come true they must first
capture a butterfly and whisper that wish to it.
Since a butterfly can make no sound, the butterfly can not reveal
the wish to anyone but the Great Spirit who hears and sees all.
In gratitude for giving the beautiful butterfly its freedom,
the Great Spirit always grants the wish.
So, according to legend, by making a wish and giving the butterfly its
the wish will be taken to the heavens and be granted.
We have gathered to grant this couple all our best wishes and are about to
butterflies free in trust that all these wishes will be granted.
easy these days to have a fancy-looking website with high-tech images. You
must look beyond appearances to locate an experienced, well-established
and respected butterfly breeder. Swallowtail Farms, Inc. is the
"Original Butterfly Company" and has been in business for over 16
years. We have produced hundreds of thousands of beautiful monarch
butterflies. Established in 1991, with over 16 years experience
in the butterfly release industry, you can be assured of becoming another
very satisfied customer.
Our experience, high standards and special methods including our “Flight
Proven™ Technology” system results in your butterflies:
questions to ask when shopping for butterflies to release:
answer: "Monarch butterflies ONLY!" Painted Ladies are ¼ the
size of Monarchs and a "mixed bouquet" is fancy language for the
butterfly company's lack of ability or inexperience to commit to a
specific type of butterfly, especially the much superior Monarch
butterfly. Many companies use the much smaller and inferior
"painted lady" butterfly. Swallowtail Farms doesn't believe in
cutting corners in order to sell an inferior product at a slightly lower
answer: "YES, each butterfly is placed in a BOX." A paper
envelope has a course texture and will likely rub the scales off of the
wings of the butterfly. Our standard
release boxes are stylish and elegant, yet designed to keep the wings
of the butterfly safe. For mass releases, butterflies are shipped
in special glassine transfer envelopes that are designed
for the protection of the butterfly. (Glassine envelopes work well for
shipping & transferring, but are not proper to be used for release.) Many
companies pack their butterflies in thin paper envelopes. Paper origami
envelopes often come apart in shipping and are not substantial enough to
protect the butterfly when handling prior to the release. Our boxes are
made of thick card stock and are held together by a locking tab that
ensures the butterfly will remain safe and healthy from the moment they
leave the farm until the time of release.
answer: "adult butterflies." It takes work to hatch a
butterfly, and hatching chrysalides in boxes results in a messy pupal
shell and body fluid that your guests will see. Also, about 10% of
chrysalides fail to emerge after they are shipped.
Farms, Inc. is an award winning company that has been around for many
years and will continue to be here when you need us. Our success as a
business depends on your satisfaction as a customer. We are a reliable and
professional firm with several farms across the country. We have developed
mulitiple cutting-edge commercial breeding techniques, including our
Flight Proven™ Technology, to ensure that you receive the highest
quality butterflies available. Our rearing methods and resulting
butterflies have also been certified as disease free. When you place an
order with us for live butterflies, our many years of experience and
dedication to high standards are your insurance for receiving lively,
healthy, and beautiful monarch butterflies for release at your special