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Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
U.S. Department of Agriculture
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Butterflies and Moths

USDA requires permits for the importation and interstate movement of live butterflies and moths under the authority of 7 CFR 330.

  • Apply for a Permit - Use PPQ Form 526, Application for permit to move live plant pests or noxious weeds 

Information about Shipping Requirements and Red and White Labels 

Frequently Asked Questions 
View a list of the commonly asked questions and concerns associated with the application process for butterflies and moths.

Butterflies for Release 
USDA will only consider permits for specific species for release into the environment depending on where the butterflies are coming from and where they are being sent. For the monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus the USDA does not issue permits for interstate movement across the continental divide for release into the environment.

USDA Butterfly Environmental Release Decision Chart 

Widely Prevalent Invertebrate Plant Pests and Pathogens 


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