easy nowadays to have a fancy-looking website with beautiful images. You must look beyond and behind appearances to
find an experienced, well-established and respected breeding
facility. Swallowtail Farms is the "Original Butterfly
Company" and has been in business many years. We are
more than just a website and have produced hundreds of thousands of beautiful monarch butterflies since 1993. We're also a founding member of the Internation Butterfly Breeders Association - IBBA (logo on left).
Unfortunately, not all butterfly breeders are on the up-and-up, hence our warning: Buyers Beware! We highly recommend that you ask the following questions as you shop around for a live butterfly supplier:
Do you have an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau?(Correct answer: "Yes!") The BBB has given us an A+ rating based upon their independent review of our customer service and product quality. Believe it or not, most butterfly businesses have less than an A rating and there are several with an F rating. So, when shopping around, be sure to get a 3rd party opinion of the quality of the company's products and customer service. To look up a company, please click on the link to go to the BBB website.
your butterflies Monarchs, Painted Ladies, or a "mixed bouquet?"(Correct answer: "Monarch butterflies!") Painted Ladies are a good cheap alternative, but they are tiny compared to Monarchs (see a side-by-side size comparison between these two butterflies). Also, a
"mixed bouquet" or "multiple species" type of butterfly release which is offered by several butterfly farms is usually all painted ladies with one or two monarchs mixed in.
Do you guarantee the delivery? (Correct answer: "Yes!") Unfortunately, we have noticed a new trend in the butterfly industry: leaving the customer high-and-dry when the package doesn't show up in time for the event. It's unfortunate this is even an issue, but we feel that the public needs to ask this question when shopping for butterflies. Since these are live butterflies, they need to be scheduled to arrive very close to the event date. This doesn't leave much room for error and so we greatly depend on a timely delivery via the overnight carrier (FedEx). Most butterfly breeders ship this way, but not all provide the same guarantee.
One of the things that sets us apart from other butterfly companies is that we provide a written guarantee up to the value of 8 dozen butterflies even if it's not our fault. For example, if FedEx loses your package or doesn't deliver in time for your event, you'll get your money back with us. With some other companies, you're just plain out of luck.
you ship overnight in insulated containers?(Correct answer: "insulated container with freeze
pack.") Standard containers are not enough to protect
butterflies from heat. It takes only 1-2 hours in a hot
delivery van to kill most butterflies. At Swallowtail Farms, we developed the entire system of shipping butterflies in cooled containers, now the industry standard.
Does each butterfly come in a release box? (Correct answer: "YES, each butterfly is placed in a BOX.") A paper origami 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. They are rigid enough to protect the butterfly from handling so that you won't have to worry about a squished butterfly. For mass releases, butterflies are shipped in special glassinetransfer envelopes which are designed for the protection of the butterfly. (Glassine envelopes work well for shipping & transferring, but are
not proper to be used for release.)
NOTE - Some companies pack their butterflies in thin paper origami 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 which ensures that the butterfly will remain safe and healthy from the moment they leave the farm until the time of release.
Will we receive adult butterflies or chrysalides?(Correct answer: "adult butterflies.") It takes work to hatch a butterfly, and hatching chrysalides in boxes results in a messy pupal shell and body fluid which your guests will see. About 10% fail to emerge when chrysalides are shipped in boxes instead of butterflies.
How long have you been in business and how much experience do you have with monarch butterflies?(Correct answer: "Over 20 Years!") Swallowtail Farms, Inc. is an award winning company that has been around for over two decades and will continue to be there 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 production centers 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 by a well-respected insect pathologist to be of high standards and 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 event.
the gift of a butterfly release to your loved
the joy of having a butterfly release at your
guests will be amazed when they release a live
butterfly at your wedding.
live butterflies at weddings or special events
is the ultimate party favor!