Whether you are a parent looking to do a fun activity with your kids or you are a hobbyist working on starting a butterfly and moth collection you need to know how to catch butterflies. The process doesn't have to be a hard one, but there are a few things to keep in mind.
First you will need a butterfly net. These have a long handle and a nylon net that will capture your butterfly without you being really close. If you don't have a butterfly net and you can't get one then another option is to use a plastic bag. You will have to move slower and be careful to be quiet while using it, but it will work.
Next you will need to find a place where there are butterflies that land. Usually a garden or wild flower patch is the best place. If you don't have any of these things nearby then you can always plant a few bright colored flowers in some pots near your home. You can also mix sugar water and place it in a shallow dish with a bright colored sponge. This often attracts the butterflies like a flower would and the butterflies enjoy this substance a lot.
Once you are that the location where there are butterflies you will want to sit still for awhile. This gives the butterflies a chance to get used to you being there. You can stand in the middle of the flowers or sit on the edge. Either way, be still and be quiet. The butterflies will get used to you and will then continue to land on the flowers.
Now you can take your net and gently scoop them up. Bring the net all the way back to yourself. The butterfly should be in the bottom of the net. You can then hold the top closed so that it can't escape. Now you have a butterfly for studying or for putting in your collection.
If you don't mean to keep the butterfly then you should know that the wings of a butterfly are covered with feathery scales. If you touch their wings the feathers will come off in a powdering substance on your fingers. This is bad for the butterfly and can make it so that they can't fly.
Additionally butterflies have a short life and if you keep them too long they will die. The lifespan of the butterfly is a relatively short one!