Insect Lore


The Company That Introduced Metamorphosis Magic Celebrates The Big 5-0 With Limited-Edition Butterfly Farm Plus Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar™ & The Grouchy Ladybug™ Growing Kits

Insect LoreShafter, CA (March 14, 2019) – It’s been 50 years since entomologist Carlos White finally solved the question that kept bugging him: Wouldn’t it be wonderful if children could see the miraculous metamorphosis of butterflies up close? The first shipment of Insect Lore’s Live Butterfly Garden was mailed to today’s Baby Boomers when they were in elementary school! Insect Lore estimates it will have sent out a quarter of a billion butterflies, worldwide, since the summer of ‘69!

Read the press release as a PDF

Insect LoreAt the same time, artist and author Eric Carle published his beloved The Very Hungry Caterpillar™. Insect Lore is celebrating five delightful decades (1969-2019) of these iconic childhood experiences with the release of a 50th Anniversary edition of Butterfly Farm ($27.99) and the Life Cycle Figurines 24-piece set ($34.99), plus The Very Hungry Caterpillar™ Butterfly Growing Kit ($32.99) and The Grouchy Ladybug™ Growing Kit ($32.99).

Insect Lore“With an increased emphasis in STEM in schools and toy stores, parents and teachers are eager to have our wonder-filled Butterfly Farm in their homes and classrooms,” revealed Marcus McManamna, Insect Lore’s president. “Of course, we’ve always been STEM, but now our products are even more sought out.”

Insect Lore’s newest butterfly kit includes a Cup of Caterpillars, a one-of-a-kind Butterfly Farm habitat, and everything a child might need to raise his own caterpillars! Equally edu-taining is Insect Lore’s 24-piece Life Cycle Figurines ($34.99). Children discover the fascinating transformation of bugs and frogs in six life cycle stages. Now when they see a Honey Bee or Praying Mantis, they have an appreciation for the wonders of nature. It’s hands-on science learning without the need for a device, cord or WiFi.

“I really think there is something about a child taking a cup of caterpillars,” continues McManamna, “watching it metamorphose and then releasing the butterflies into the world. From their own micro-perspective children believe they’ve done something to help the planet.”

McManamna is spot on about Insect Lore being quintessentially STEM. In fact, the company products were recently awarded STEM Authenticated Certification from Insect Lore’s items excelled during its evaluation process, scoring in the top 90 percentile of over 1,100 STEM products reviewed by since 2014.’s mission is to make quality STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education accessible to all. For more than 15 years, has been at the forefront of the global, Pre-K – 12th grade STEM education movement. Through an extensive collaborative effort, has worked closely with pedagogical researchers, a community of teachers, administrators, and schools to establish a respected set of benchmarks. The resources and proven best-practices of this community have led to the world’s first and most recognized STEM credentialing framework: STEM Accreditation™ for Programs, STEM Certification™ for People, and STEM Approved™ for Products.

Insect Lore specializes in many innovative educational products for young learners, bringing science to life in countless classrooms over the years. Look for these four Spring-has-sprung products in specialty retail stores, on Amazon and their own site,

New! 50th Anniversary Butterfly Farm • Ages 4+ • $27.99New! 50th Anniversary Butterfly Farm • Ages 4+ • $27.99
Butterflies are known to be the most beautiful insects in the world. To celebrate 50 years, Insect Lore has a created a limited-edition Butterfly Farm providing children and adults alike the wonder of metamorphosis! This special-edition Butterfly Farm includes a pop-up habitat with ultra-clear panel ideal for viewing Painted Lady butterflies; a tuckaway learning panel on the habitat showing all 4 stages of metamorphosis plus five baby caterpillars with all the food they need. Inside this kit are a Flower butterfly feeder, sugar packets, Deluxe Chrysalis Station Log, a feeding dropper and helpful caterpillar-raising tips! For $34.99 at retail stores, this special kit includes a prepaid voucher, so you can order your caterpillars to arrive whenever you are ready! Or, order online for $27.99 and have the live caterpillars arrive with your kit.

Insect LorePainted Lady butterflies are among the most well-traveled butterflies in the world and populate every continent except Australia and Antarctica. Since these beneficial pollinators fly thousands of miles during their life span, they can be released in both cities and green spaces.

Life Cycle Figurines 24 Piece Set • Ages 4+ • $34.99Life Cycle Figurines 24 Piece Set • Ages 4+ • $34.99
Durable and oversized for little hands, this edu-taining set includes six life cycle stages for the Butterfly, Ladybug, Honey Bee, Praying Mantis, Ant and Frog. The 24 high quality figurines are organized in a handy carrying case. With these true-to-life figurines, young learners are introduced to the life cycle of bugs and frogs. Through play, children practice their counting, sorting and sequencing skills.

Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar™ Butterfly Growing Kit • Ages 4+ • $32.99Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar™ Butterfly Growing Kit • Ages 4+ • $32.99
No doubt you’ve read the beloved book. Now watch five very hungry Painted Lady caterpillars grow, change into chrysalides, and then emerge as beautiful Painted Lady Butterflies! After you’ve watched them grow, it’s time to let them go! Your butterflies will fly away to do the important job of pollinating. With the $29.99 kit at stores, redeem the voucher when you’re ready for your caterpillars to arrive and simply pay $7.95 in shipping, or order online for $32.99 to have your live caterpillars arrive with your kit.

Eric Carle’s The Grouchy Ladybug™ Growing Kit • Ages 4+ • $32.99Eric Carle’s The Grouchy Ladybug™ Growing Kit • Ages 4+ • $32.99
The children’s book morphs into a STEM lesson with this Ladybug Land in friendly Eric Carle colors. Inside each kit are tubes of 10 to 13 live grouchy ladybug larvae, watering dropper and all-important ladybug-raising tips. The built-in magnifying lid allows budding entomologists to watch the Ladybugs’ every move! With the $29.99 kit at retail stores, simply pay $7.95 for shipping whenever you’re ready or order your kit online for $32.99 to have your kit arrive with a tube of live ladybug larvae.

The Pink-Spotted Ladybug, also known as the Pink Ladybug, is a beneficial insect native to North America. This gardener’s friend feeds mainly on aphids, as well as insect eggs and mites. Since the Pink Spotted Ladybug prefers moist environments, try to release your ladybugs in the morning, before the dew has dried. This may encourage these helpful insects to make your garden their home.

For five decades Insect Lore has been the go-to innovative educational line for young learners. Its signature Live Butterfly Kit has brought science to life in countless classrooms. This friendly, hands-on introduction to insect metamorphosis, entomology and life-cycle learning has a rich American history.

1969: A Groovy Idea
Insect Lore began at the proverbial kitchen table. Carlos White and his wife Pat experimented with myriad combinations of food supplements for Painted Lady caterpillars. It was a revolutionary concept: a customer could purchase an educational kit that included a butterfly habitat and a certificate. The customer would then mail the certificate to Insect Lore’s “butterfly nursery” and in return would receive live baby Painted Lady caterpillars. The caterpillars would be shipped to the customer in a special jar that included White’s unique caterpillar food. Over a span of approximately three weeks the Painted Lady caterpillars would eat, change into chrysalides, and finally emerge as adult butterflies in the Butterfly Garden hatching box. After a few days of observation, the customers would experience the joy and wonder of setting their very own Painted Lady Butterflies free to begin the incredible life cycle all over again in the great outdoors.

1999: Houston, We Have Butterflies!1999: Houston, We Have Butterflies!
The July 23, 1999 launch of NASA’s Columbia Space Shuttle carried some unusual astronauts – Insect Lore Painted Lady butterflies! Insect Lore partnered with a group working with NASA to put the winged creatures into orbit. Scientists wanted to determine if the caterpillars would undergo metamorphosis in a zero-gravity environment. Would an adult Painted Lady butterfly form properly within its chrysalis without the aid of gravity to “pull” its parts into place?

The result? All of Insect Lore’s Painted Lady butterflies successfully emerged aboard the Columbia – in fact, they hatched perfectly in orbit!

2019: Insects In The Digital Age
Butterflies, Ladybugs, Praying Mantises, Oh My! Insect Lore continues to give children a friendly, hands-on introduction to insect metamorphosis, entomology and life-cycle learning. While its main focus still lies with butterfly-related kits and educational material, the made-in-America company have expanded its product line to include ladybug, ant and praying mantis kits, as well as bug catchers, keepers, viewers and other exciting items for insect lovers.

Read the press release as a PDF

About World of Eric Carle
World of Eric Carle™ is a design-driven licensing and merchandising program based on the beloved picture books by Eric Carle. A prolific author and artist, Eric Carle has written and illustrated more than seventy books, which have sold over 144 million copies worldwide. Like his books, World of Eric Carle brand draws upon Eric Carle’s approach to creativity, discovery, play and development.

About Insect Lore
Insect Lore is the Original Butterflies-By-Mail Company, founded by entomologist Carlos White. It was White’s
dream to provide children with the opportunity to witness the wonder of butterfly metamorphosis up close in the home and classroom. After years of research and development, Insect Lore launched in 1969 with the creation of our beloved flagship butterfly-growing kit, the Live Butterfly Garden. Decades later, Insect Lore ships hundreds of thousands of caterpillars and butterfly kits to excited families and students across the US, the UK and Europe each year. Our innovative product line now includes ladybug, praying mantis and ant growing kits, as well as hands-on educational products that make science more approachable and relatable to young learners.


Written by Matt

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