A monarch butterfly with a circular tag on its wing perches on a person's finger. (photo © Brett Amy Thelen)

Butterfly Monitoring

Spread your wings.

Monarch Caterpillar Surveys

Each summer, Harris Center ecologists work with community volunteers to survey milkweed density and monarch eggs, caterpillars, and butterflies in a Harris Center-conserved milkweed patch in Peterborough. These data are submitted to the Monarch Larva Monitoring Project (MLMP), an international effort to track monarch habitat, distribution, and abundance during the breeding season.

Undergraduate resesearcher Katie Galletta examines a milkweed plant for signs of monarch caterpillar herbivory. (photo © Mark Wilson)

Undergraduate resesearcher Katie Galletta examines a milkweed plant for signs of monarch caterpillar herbivory. (photo © Mark Wilson)

A fifth-instar monarch caterpillar in a Harris Center-conserved millkweed patch. (photo © Brett Amy Thelen)

A fifth-instar monarch caterpillar in a Harris Center-conserved millkweed patch. (photo © Brett Amy Thelen)

New Hampshire Butterfly Monitoring Network

Starting in 2022, the Harris Center will partner with New Hampshire Fish and Game to launch a statewide community science Butterfly Monitoring Network. Here in the Monadnock Region, we’ll pilot a summertime SuperSanctuary Butterfly Count, following methods developed by the North American Butterfly Association (NABA). We’ll also be contributing observations to the NH Butterfly Monitoring Network iNaturalist project. All butterfly enthusiasists are welcome, with or without prior butterfly experience!

A group of butterfly enthusiasts consults a field guide in the Harris Center's pollinator garden. (photo © Brett Amy Thelen)

A group of butterfly enthusiasts consults a field guide in the Harris Center's pollinator garden. (photo © Brett Amy Thelen)

A frittilary dines on verbena. (photo © Tianne Strombeck)

A frittilary dines on verbena. (photo © Tianne Strombeck)

Contact Us

For more information or to be notified of upcoming opportunities to participate in butterfly monitoring with the Harris Center, please contact staff ecologist Karen Seaver by email.