Disease Education & Prevention in Butterflies

Insect Pathology Services
at Mississippi State University

This service is vital to insect rearers and we are pleased to provide it. In our screen to determine what pathogen is involved, we will look for the Oe protozoan, nosema, viruses, and so forth. If it is a non-occluded virus she will have to use the TEM scope. Therefore, this is a package deal or special screening service for butterfly breeders.


Identification of disease organisms and microbes responsible for contaminating insect colonies and/or their artificial rearing diets. 

Basic service:

Initial population screen of up to 20 insects (= 1 population) for infectious disease organisms [bacteria, fungi, protozoa, occluded viruses, and nematodes].  This includes a stained smear from each insect as well as streaking on microbiological agar plates.

Additional services:*

1.   Antibiotic sensitivity assay (12-15 antibiotics used) for bacteria encountered from initial screen.

2.   Identification of bacterium (to genus) isolated from initial screen.

3.   Non-occluded virus screen by TEM (will include representative photos from sample).

Routine screen:

We can also offer periodic population screens of up to 20 insects per sample date and population for early detection and prevention of insectary diseases (frequency and cost to be negotiated). 

Full details, service costs and a submission form can be found in this MS Word document:

International Butterfly Breeders Association, Inc.

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