David Folk’s Butterfly Farm

David Folk joined the Berwick Rotarians at Castawayz in Berwick on September 30th to discuss Monarch Butterflys.  This was not just a conversation about how beautiful and peaceful they look fluttering from plant to plant, David actually showed us their lifecycle and gave us a life size demonstration of a butterfly’s senses.  Wearing the "Butterfly garb" Dave showed how a butterfly breathes through holes on their stomach, they taste with little tongues on their feet, theysmell through their antenea and they see through multifacited eyes.  They are five weeks in the catapillar state and they eat constantly, growing out of their skin 4 times.  After the fifth skin sheds, the caterpilar creates a green cocoon or chrysalis.   In about 10 days the Butterfly emerges and lives from 2 to 6 weeks.   David’s farm supplies butterflies all around the area for weddings or other special occasions. 

Recently he supplied over 400 for the Butterfly release for Columbia/Montour Hospice.  He sends his butterflies south (shipped in envelopes, ice and a packing box).   This business started as a science project he and his daughter worked on.  The first year, was part of the learning process and many of the larvae and butterflies died.  By the second year, things were going very well.  They raised $1200, more than enough to achieve a passing grade on the project.  Today this butterfly farm generates over $10,000 and many hours of enjoyment working with these graceful creatures and sharing the secrets of the monarch butterfly with delighted audiences.