Photograph of a group of Large White (_Pieris brassicae_) caterpillars

Caterpillars, like these Large White butterfly (Pieris brassicae) caterpillars, make great pets and have a fascinating life cycle.

One of the best ways to learn about animals is to keep and look after them. Insects and other invertebrates are no exception. In most cases they are easy to look after (provided you've researched how to care for them first), inexpensive and don't require a vast amount of space. Below are links to care sheets for some of the more commonly kept invertebrates.

Remember: it is important that you know the needs and requirements of your pet before you obtain the animal. You should never, ever obtain an animal before researching its needs and preparing the housing and conditions.

Available caresheets:

Notes on keeping fireflies as a pet

The AES is often contacted about fireflies and we have provided the following information.

Fireflies or Lightning Bugs (Family Lampyridae) are beetles that have a luminous organ in their abdomen for attracting a mate.

The adults, which the majority of people are interested in, do not feed and are relatively short-lived. All of the feeding is done as a larvae. The larvae eat slugs, snails, insect larvae etc. You may be able to rear larvae if you find them but it is unlikely that you will be able to get the adults to breed in captivity.