Welcome to Association for Butterflies!

Association for Butterflies was established to support butterfly farmers and hobbyists through education, mentoring, and research. We are dedicated to educating both farmers and the public in the area of conservation by promoting butterfly habitats and gardening, and to provide resources that ensure quality raising practices for healthy butterflies.

Our membership reflects a wide variety of interests including professional butterfly breeders, hobbyists, educators, exhibitors, gardeners, and conservationists.  We have several different membership levels to meet the needs of butterfly professionals and enthusiasts.

Association for Butterflies (AFB) is committed to education and offers live courses available at various times throughout the year as well as self-paced online courses that can be taken at your convenience.

Upcoming Courses

    • 20 Oct 2018
    • 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    • 1100 Logan St, Louisville, KY 40204
    • 59
    Register

    Association for Butterflies is having a Gathering. 

    What is this?

    An informal gathering at a farmers location where other professional farmers can sit and talk about problems, ideas, suggestions, etc.  A great time to just sit and relax and really get to talk to other farmers.  You also get to see the hosting farmers place of business. 

    Where will this be?

                    This will be at Blair Leano-Helvey of Idlewild Butterfly Farm, located at 1100 Logan St, Louisville, KY 40204 Louisville, KY. Idlewild Butterfly Farm and Insectarium is a privately owned small business in Louisville, KY that operates as an insect rearing lab, educational center, and retail store. Owned and operated by degreed entomologists, Idlewild is a sister company of Entomology Solutions LLC, which was founded by Blair  in 2009. She went on to open Idlewild Butterfly Farm in 2015.

    Idlewild is a USDA-inspected facility which houses a number of insects, arachnids and other arthropods, including tropical species that cannot be found anywhere else in the state. In fact, they let their guests hold and interact closely with many of these amazing creatures as part of a guided tour through our rearing lab, insectarium and live butterfly flight house. Their outdoor flight house operates during the warmer months and is stocked with several species of butterflies which roam freely within the enclosed space.

    They raise butterflies and other insects for special events such as weddings, bridal showers, baby showers, funerals, memorials, birthdays, retirements, christenings, graduations, or any other occasion. They also offer items such as butterfly life cycle kits, custom live butterfly displays, and many other ways to create the experience of a lifetime. Idlewild also offers on- and off-site educational programs for schools, private groups, or your special occasion.

    When is this?

                    October 20, 2018 anytime after 10 am. till 5 pm

    What does it cost?

                    We ask that you pay $10 to cover cost of food.  Lunch, drinks and snacks will be provided.  If you would like an adult beverage, we ask for an additional $2, total $12.00.  There will be options when you register.

    How many can attend?

                    The first 70 people to register and pay their $10 will be able to attend since we are limited on space.  Come join in on the fun!   Hope to see you there!

    Please note this event is for Professional Butterfly Farmers.


    • 04 Feb 2019
    • 09 Mar 2019
    • Online
    Register

    Pre-Register for 2019!

    Learn how to recognize and prevent disease in butterflies.
    FOUR weeks of online disease education and receive your “Advanced Disease Prevention Certification” seal and certificate upon successful completion of the Course and Final Exam.

    February 4 - March 9, 2019

    This is a LIVE course taught by Edith Smith of Shady Oak Butterfly Farm. 


    Over 130 pages of instructional material including: 
    Signs and Symptoms; Methods of Disease Transmission; OE; NPV; Fungi; Bacteria; Breeding Stock; Checking for Disease; Standard Operating Procedures, Journal; Causes of Disease; Safety Precautions to prevent disease; Sanitization of eggs, pupae, food, surfaces, and containers; and more! 

    How the course works: 
    • The beginning of each week for four weeks, students receive their course material via email.
    • A short quiz is included each week. This quiz is due by Saturday midnight.
    • An email mailing list is used for class discussion. Students are not required to receive or participate in this mailing list.
    • The end of the fourth week students receive their final exam. The final exam is due the following Saturday by midnight. This gives a minimum of seven days to fill out the final exam.
    • Quizzes, vocabulary words, and final exam are optional unless the participant wishes to receive a course completion certificate.
    Course fees:  
    AFB Professional - FREE 
    AFB Hobbyist - $25.00
    Non-AFB Member - $150.00

    Join the Association for Butterflies now as a Professional and take it for free!  Hobbyist may take the course for $25.00.  Non AFB Members may take the course for $150.00.

    Week One: Farm size and disease,  Basic information,  What is disease?,  SOP,  Journal,  Breeding stock, Eggs,  Larvae signs & symptoms

    Week Two:  Disease transmission,  Outbreak triggers,  Breeding Stock,  Cleaning the lab (or rearing room),  Disinfecting rearing containers/sleeves,  Sanitizing eggs,  Sanitizing pupae,  Larval food,  Sanitizing food,  Instant/artificial diet,  Disposal of material

    Week Three:  NPV,  Cleaning the lab,  Screening for disease,  Bacteria,  Bt,  Fungus,  Nosema,  Serratia,  Aspergillus niger,  Toxic plants,  Mechanical damage

    Week Four:  OE – a parasite,  OE - signs and symptoms,  OE - lifecycle,  OE - in pupae,  OE -Taping for OE,  OE -How Monarchs contract OE,  OE - Disinfecting eggs

    Week Five:  Final Exam - Week of March 11th.  Due March 16th.

    Edith and her husband Stephen have been butterfly farming for over 18 years.  Their farm, co-owned with their daughter Charlotte, raises 30 species per year.  In addition to raising butterflies, Edith searches the fields and woods for anything she hasn't raised and in the process, has learned a good deal about diseases and parasitoids. 

    Edith has been teaching this course every year since 2007.  Each year it is updated with new photographs added to illustrate diseases and everything that pertains to disease in butterflies and raising butterflies.

    Edith worked with Dr. Leellen Solter and Amanda Lawrence as they edited the material before it was offered as a course.  The OE material was edited by Dr. Sonia Altizer and Dr. Karen Oberhauser first as a presentation (presented by Edith) at an AFB Symposium. 



 



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