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Butterfly Farm and Butterfly Breeder Intern and Internship Program and Seminars

Shady Oak Butterfly Farm offers seminars and internship programs. (Referral letter)

An intern may work from one day to one week at the butterfly farm, depending upon the time of year. In years past, seminars and internships were held at the farm itself. Due to the growth of the farm, the space that was once set up for the table and projector is now reserved for packing orders. Instead, this part of the seminar/internship is held at our house, next to the farm, and we will walk next door to the farm for hands-on segments of the seminar/internship. (Scroll to the bottom for seminar/intern fees.)

Please contact us if you are interested in either program, butterfly farming/breeding internship or butterfly breeding seminar.

Topics and activities covered in both the internship and seminar programs:
butterfly care, egg production, larvae production, pupae pinning, eclosing methods, lepidoptera disease identification and prevention, packing and shipping, artificial diet, hand-pairing, plant propagation and production, butterfly farm layout, permit application, marketing, farmer networking, sources for supplies, and more.

With a seminar, you wash eggs once, pin a few pupae, and a few other steps of farming if time allows, including check adults for OE and look at slides with a lot or OE and a tiny bit of OE. No matter which one you take, we are determined that youíll go home knowing that you can spot OE without problem (if youíve not already figured it out!). We cover everything that we do in the internship week but in less depth, due to the fact that there is less time.

With a week's internship, you do a part of everything.
Day one; hand pairing, egg production, (hands-on) disinfecting eggs, tend to hatchling larvae, locating breeding stock in the wild, farm supply sources, and packing pupae for shipping.
Day two; diseases (signs/symptoms, prevention, identification, control, elimination), tending older larvae and pulling pupae.
Day three; farm layouts, farmer networking, pack larvae for shipping, pupae disinfection, pupae cooling, pupae pinning, adult emerging, adult care, and adult holding until shipment for release.
Day four; drop-shipping, packing/shipping adults, Painted Ladies and AD, and visit the Butterfly Rainforest at the McGuire Center UF (if a spouse attends, we donít cover the second entry fee).
Day five; (hands-on) checking adults for disease, permits, release opposition, and recap anything and redo anything you have questions about from the week. Thereís so much that goes into the internship. Included in the program are tips that we learned the hard way; what we wish we had known or learned the hard way.

Five day internship; we can pick you up at the Gainesville or Jacksonville airport if you fly into Florida.

We will be glad to offer suggestions for a hotel or bed and breakfast nearby. During the week of your internship, we will transport you to and from the recommended bed and breakfast. You will not need a car if you fly into Gainesville or Jacksonville.

Seminar size may range from a one-person seminar to groups of forty seminar attendees.

You are welcome to bring your camera to take photos as you visit and/or work at the butterfly farm.

Scroll down for photos of interns at work and areas of Shady Oak Butterfly Farm.

Prices are located at the bottom of this page.
Latoya, from Jamaica,
with the farm family.
Adult butterfly care &
Feeding Monarch butterflies.
Sterilizing eggs and
caring for hatchling larvae.
Latoya feeds larvae in
the Larvae Laboratory.
Only a few species are
fed artificial diet.
Painted Lady butterflies
are the primary species
raised on artificial diet.
Milkweed is grown in six
greenhouses to feed
Monarch and Queen butterflies.
300 pupae can be 'pinned
in 20 minutes.
Butterflies are emerged
where predators and parasitiods
cannot harm them.
Latoya checks Monarch butterflies
for Ophryocystis elektroskirrha, Oe.
Latoya releases butterflies
into the 'apartments' or
screened gardens.
Julia butterflies 'sun'
in the apartments
before shipping.
USDA APHIS ppq526 permits
are required to ship
butterflies across state line.
Latoya collects butterflies to
ship for a butterfly release.
Butterflies are carefully
packed for safe shipping
to their release location.

Butterfly Breeding Intern Prices:
Internship programs may be scheduled for one to five day internship length.
One full internship week (five day): $1,250
Three day internship: $900
Four day internship: $1,150
Five day internship: $1,250
Transportation to and from Gainesville or Jacksonville airport is free for five day internships ONLY. For other interns who wish pickup and return to the airport, we add an additional $50. Please contact us for more information about airport pickup and return.
Husband and wife teams; price is same as for one intern EXCEPT that the spouse is responsible for his/her own cost of meals (when eating out, not at the farm) and entry into the Butterfly Rainforest in Gainesville.
If more than one intern shares a full week, each intern will receive a discount on the price.

Butterfly Farm Seminar Prices:
One day seminar;
$400 for a one day seminar.
$600 for a two day seminar.
Lunch is included. Spouses are free but must pay for any meals if we eat out instead of at the farm.