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silk worm shop logo Frequently Asked Questions


Getting Started:

Q- 1. Do you have silkworms available?
-Also: How do I purchase silkworms?


Q- 2. What do I need to get started with silkworms?

Q- 3. How do I care for my silkworms?

Q- 4. How long will the silkworm food last?

Q- 5. How much silkworm food do I need?

Silkworm Care / General Questions:

Q- 6. My silkworms are just the right size. Can I stop feeding them?

Q- 7. Are silkworms better than other feeders?

Q- 8. My silkworms aren't eating or moving. What's wrong?

Q- 9. My silkworms are dying. What am I doing wrong?

Q- 10. Can I feed silkworms other types of plant leaves?

Q- 11. How do I breed my own silkworms/deal with silkworm eggs?

Q- 12. How many and how often should I feed my pet?

Praying Mantis Care / General Questions:

Q- 13. I have questions about the praying mantis eggs and living juveniles that you offer. Please help.

Customer Service / Ordering / Using Our Website:

Q- 14. Do your products come with a guarantee?

Q- 15. I would like to order silkworms, fruit flies, praying mantis, etc.
How much is that and what is the total, including shipping?


Q- 16. Do you sell zebra or tiger silkworms?

Q- 17. What color cocoons will your silkworms spin?

Q- 18. Emergency! I need an order right away. Can you help?
-Also: If I place an order now, when will I receive it?


Q- 19. I need an order delivered on (insert any date here).
When should I order?
-Also: May I order now and have it shipped on a future date?


Q- 20. When will my order be shipped and when will I receive it?

Q- 21. I live in (insert any U.S. location here).
Can you safely ship live insects to me?


Q- 22. May I return my purchase?

Q- 23. I have a problem with my order. What should I do?

Q- 24. May I pick up an order at your shop instead of having it shipped?

Q- 25. May I place an order over the phone instead of the website?

Q- 26. Do you ship your products internationally?

  Can't find the information you're seeking? Email Us With Your Question HERE.
  Also, check our - Silkworm Information page HERE.



Getting Started:

Q- 1. Do you have silkworms available?
-Also: How do I purchase silkworms?

A. Yes, silkworms are almost always in stock here at our shop. We commonly offer size categories in extra small, small and medium. We seldom have large silkworms available, however. If we do not have a particular size in stock, it will be listed as out of stock on the website.

If you would like to purchase silkworms at our shop, please order on this website. You will find the product menu HERE.

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Q- 2. What do I need to get started on a silkworm colony?
A. You will need the silkworms, food for them and someplace to house them. You have the option of either purchasing the eggs or the silkworm at the larval (caterpillar) stage. Eggs can be more challenging because the newborn caterpillar is at its most delicate. We offer the silkworm at different sizes from extra small to medium and occasionally larges. The various sizes are at different stages of development, so there is no difference other than their age.

For food, silkworms only eat mulberry leaves. You can feed them fresh leaves or our prepared mulberry food.

The housing part is easy. Any cardboard box or plastic container will do fine.

You will find both eggs, silkworm caterpillars and mulberry food HERE.

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Q- 3. How do I care for my silkworms?
A. Caring for your silkworms is very easy. Upon arrival, place the silkworms in a larger plastic container if they are overcrowded. Feed your worms with either mulberry leaves or pre-made silkworm food (sold separately). A cheese grater is the best method for distributing the food evenly, but you can also break the food into smaller pieces. Grate some food directly onto the worms and replace the lid to prevent the food from drying out quickly. If condensation develops, vent the lid

Before feeding again, take the lid off until the old food and droppings dry out. If your worms are the desired feeding size upon arrival, you do not need to feed them. They will stay alive for a week or more (depending on temp. and size) without food. Repeat this feeding procedure until the worms reach the desired size. Obviously, the more you feed them, the faster they will grow.

As the silkworms grow and become crowded, transfer them to a larger plastic container. The lid you are using needs to have ventilation holes. If not, you need to vent the lid so the silkworms won't suffocate and to allow condensation to dissipate. You may need to separate them into more than one container, depending on the number and size. Handle the worms with extreme care, as they bruise easily. Most of the worms will be clinging to a layer of silk, old food and droppings. You do not need to separate the worms from the material they are clinging to as long as it is dry. For optimal growth and health, keep your worms at a temperature of 75°-88° F.

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Q- 4. How long will the silkworm food last?
A. Keep the food in the refrigerator in an airtight container, wash your hands before handling, and the food will last for up to a month.
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Q- 5. How much silkworm food do I need?
A. As a rule of thumb, you will need 2 lbs of silkworm food to raise 50 silkworms from egg to cocoon. However, please keep in mind that the actual amount needed will vary depending on quantity wasted and raising conditions.
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Silkworm Care / General Questions:

Q- 6. My silkworms are just the right size.
Can I stop feeding them?

A. Once the silkworm has molted a couple of times, you may stop feeding them every day. It is possible for them to live without food for a week or longer (depending on temperature and size). But, it's a good idea to feed them every couple days to keep them hydrated and healthy, thereby extending this "hold" period.
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Q- 7. Are silkworms better than other pet and herp feeders?
A. Yes. Click Here to learn 11 reasons why silkworms are an excellent critter to feed your pet. Click Here to learn about the nutritional value of silkworms compared to other common feeders.
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Q- 8. My silkworms aren't eating or moving. What's wrong?
A. This is normal, and actually means that your worms are healthy and growing. A Silkworm's only job is to eat and grow, but because their soft skins do not stretch as they grow, the worms must shed their skins. They will molt 3 to 4 times during growth. If your worms aren't eating and are sitting still (especially with their heads raised in the air), they're getting ready to molt. Your worms will spend one or two inactive days just before molting.
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Q- 9. My silkworms are dying. What am I doing wrong?
A. Excessive condensation forming in the container after feeding is the leading cause of failure. Be sure old food is gone or is completely dry before feeding again. If droppings are not drying out, be sure to remove the old waste. In order for your worms to stay healthy for many weeks, you'll need to keep the silkworms as dry as possible. If condensation builds up during feeding, vent the container lid to prevent excess humidity. In order to increase air exchange, instead of a lid, you can also use several layers of paper towels secured around the container with a rubber band.

Mold develops from high temperatures and high humidity. If the silkworms are covered with droppings, silk and old food for too long, mold and bacteria may develop and kill them. If mold does develop, grate about 1/4 inch of food (sold separately) all over the worms with a cheese grater. As the worms crawl to the top of the new food pile you can transfer them off the old food and waste and place them into a new container.

Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly before handling the worms or their food. Silkworms are sensitive to bacteria if you don't properly handle them. The droppings and uneaten food can become a suitable germ-free mat for the worms to hold onto, as long as they are completely dry and the container environment remains dry.

If you are feeding mulberry leaves, be sure they are thoroughly washed. Pesticides and other residues can kill silkies. Also, silkworms are susceptible to bruising and dying if now handled with care, especially as they grow larger. When handling and transferring the worms, be very gentle.

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Q- 10. Can I feed the silkworms other types of plant leaves?
A. No. Silkworms can ONLY survive on mulberry leaves (genus Morus), sometimes Osage orange (Maclura pomifera) or silkworm food, which is made from mulberry leaves. Your worms may eat other types of vegetation, such as lettuce leaves, but it will kill them.
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Q- 11. How do I breed my own silkworms?
A. Although we encourage you to get into the silkworm breeding process if it so interests you, we do not give lessons on breeding silkworms. All of our creatures, including Our Silkworm Eggs and Silkworms, however, do come with detailed instructions on raising and growing the silkworms, but producing your own eggs is another matter on which you will find lots of information by doing a little research. You may also be interested in some of the books we offer here in our shop- GO HERE.
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Q- 12. How many silkworms/superworms/fruit flies, etc.
should I feed my pet?

A. Each species of animal and each individual animal have different feeding needs and requirements that we cannot properly advise you on. It also depends on how much your specific animal is used to eating as well as size and age. We cannot offer instructions on feeding and care for your pet. We can, however, offer instructions and advise on caring for any and all of the creatures we sell.
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Praying Mantis Care / General Questions:

Q- 13. I have questions about the praying mantis eggs and living juveniles that you offer. Please help.
A. You will find our FAQ page completely devoted to the praying mantis on our sister website, www.PrayingMantisShop.com - Click HERE
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Customer Service / Ordering / Using Our Website:

Q- 14. Do you guarantee your products?
A. Yes!
Please click here to read all about our Product Guarantee

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Q- 15. I would like to order silkworms, fruit flies, praying mantis, etc.
How much is that and what would be the total, including shipping?

A. If you would like to know the grand total for a certain order, please add the item(s) you are interested in to your shopping cart and then proceed to check out of the store. You can find the total without entering any personal information. When the cart asks for all your information, you will see your order total at the top of the page.
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Q- 16. Do you sell zebra or tiger silkworms?
A. There are three main variations of the Bombyx Mori Silkworm breed: Zebra, Tiger, and White Seductress. The only difference is their outward appearance. Zebra and Tiger have dark stripes of different width, and the Seductress is all white. We sell the white seductress only.
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Q- 17. What color cocoons will your silkworms spin?
Also, why do some silkworms produce different colored silk?

A. The silkworms we offer produce white silk only. Some silkworms will spin yellow, pale green and even pink silk cocoons. It's mainly genetic. When silkworms were still wild, they all produced yellow silk to blend in with dead leaves. Over the centuries, sericulturists have selectively bred for whiter and whiter silk until they achieved the pure white we see today. The yellow cocoon genetics are still around, though. Silkworms can also be fed certain things to make their silk a different color, but we don't recommend that since they should only be fed mulberry.
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Q- 18. Emergency! I need an order right away. Can you help?
-Also: If I place an order now, when will I receive it?

A. Maybe eggs just hatched and you have nothing for the new babies. Or you have a science deadline in two days. We understand and will try to help. Please be aware that we ship Monday through Wednesday only. Sorry, no exceptions. Orders placed after Wednesday 10am PST are shipped the following Monday. It will take 2-3 days from then to reach you, occasionally longer. We can offer USPS Priority-Express mail which is guaranteed 1-2 days. Please CONTACT US with your zip code and exactly what you will order. We will then let you know the additional shipping cost and when you will receive the order.
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Q- 19. I need an order delivered on (insert any date here).
When should I order?
-Also: May I order now and have it shipped on a future date?

A. You are welcome to leave a message in the order notes stating when you would like the order shipped, but not when you would like it delivered. Please do not place your order more than a week or two before you need to have it shipped.

You can determine when to place your order by taking the following into account: We ship Monday through Wednesday only, and it will usually take 2-3 days to reach you. Please see next question to find out what day your order will be shipped. As you can see, delivery on a Monday or Tuesday is usually not possible.

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Q- 20. When will my order be shipped and when will I receive it?
A. Orders placed Monday are shipped Tuesday.
Orders placed Tues through Wed 10am pst ship Wed.
Orders placed Wed after 10am pst through Sun ship Mon.

From the day of shipment, your order will most likely take 2-3 days to reach you. Shipment is via USPS priority mail. Please be aware that 2-3 day delivery time is not guaranteed and can occasionally be longer. Also, delivery time will be 1 day if you live in the San Diego area. If you would like 1-2 day shipping, please contact us with exactly what you will order and your zip code. We will then give you a quote and await your ok.

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Q- 21. I live in (insert any U.S. location here).
Can you safely ship live insects to me?

A. We ship to all parts of the country all year long with very seldom a problem. Shipment is via USPS priority mail (2-3 day). Packages MUST be retrieved from their delivery location immediately upon delivery. Keep an eye on the tracking info you will receive. If you do not receive it, let us know and we will resend. Very important: Packages cannot be left in the sun or a hot mailbox, even in relatively cool weather. If your daytime high temperature will be 40 degrees or below, you should order a heat pack or two with your order. Shipping to cold temperatures is not a problem as long as the package is not left out in a snow storm upon delivery. You will find heat packs in the navigation menu while ordering. We do offer a live guarantee, but if you live in a very hot or cold climate, please review the terms of the guarantee HERE.
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Q- 22. May I return my purchase?
A. In most cases, no. For obvious reasons, live animals cannot be returned. Non perishable items may be returned for a store credit at the buyer's expense. Original shipping cannot be refunded.
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Q- 23. I have a problem with my order. What should I do?
A. Our goal is a satisfied customer. If you have a problem with your order, please Contact Us right away and we will work with you and try to solve it. Please note: We offer a Live Guarantee. Our guarantee has certain terms that you need to be aware of. If you are planning to order from us, please read our guarantee HERE.
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Q- 24. May I pick up an order at your shop instead of having it shipped?
A. No, sorry. All orders are shipped only.
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Q- 25. May I place an order over the phone instead of the website?
A. For security and administrative reasons we can only accept orders placed on our website
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Q- 26. Do you ship your products internationally?
A. No, we ship neither our living nor our non-living products outside the U.S. We do not ship to Hawaii or Puerto Rico. We ship to Alaska, but do not offer a live guarantee.
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