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HomeButterworms: The Buttery Feeder Insect

Butterworms: The Buttery Feeder Insect

by Ryan Huether Butterworms (Chilecomadia moorei) are moth larvae from Chile. They make great treats for a wide variety of amphibians and reptiles. Similar to waxworms, butterworms contain a high amount of fat and make great food for special occasions. These larvae are about 1-1.5” in length and are a bright yellow-orange color. 
How do I collect and feed butterworms?
Remove them from the wheat bran they are packed in. They can be fed to your pet via tongs or placed in a dish. Do not place them directly on the substrate in your pet’s enclosure- they'll quickly burrow and hide.
How do I store Butterworms before use?
Store between 40-50°F and 20-30% humidity to slow down growth. If keeping them in a fridge, store them high up in the door, since this is typically the warmest area in a refrigerator.
Hey, why does the container look empty?
These caterpillars appreciate their privacy! They'll spin little enclosures out of silk and wheat bran. Carefully tear this apart to remove the worm.
How do I rear butterworms?
Put simply: you can't. Due to concerns that they might potentially become ecologically or agriculturally harmful, all of them are irradiated before leaving Chile. This does not kill them and it doesn't make them harmful to your herps. However, it does prevent them from moving further along in their developmental cycle.
Will my butterworms get superpowers?
So far, no butterworm exposed to the irradiation process has ever been known to have gained any special abilities other than the ability to be legally shipped into the United States. If anything, being irradiated has the reverse effect- a non irradiated butterworm would at least eventually gain the power of flight after all. And if they did, we’d have to start calling them superworms, and you can probably guess how confusing that would be.

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