The Florida Butterfly Monitoring Network is a field conservation and education program that seeks to promote and study the health of butterfly populations throughout the state. Volunteers and scientists come together to conduct a one-day census of all butterflies seen within a 15-mile-diameter circle during the North American Butterfly Association (NABA) annual butterfly count. The NABA compiles and publishes the results in annual reports, providing information on the geographical distribution and relative size of the populations of the species counted. This data can be used to monitor butterfly populations and study the effects of changes in climate and habitats. Butterfly monitoring consists of counting every butterfly found less than 5 meters on each side of up to 8 permanent transects along trails and in open fields and meadows.
There are more than 700 monitoring sites participating in the Monarch Larvae Monitoring Program in the eastern United States and Canada. Volunteers have been monitoring monarchs for more than ten years at Peninsula Point in Michigan, at the Cape May Bird Observatory in New Jersey, and at the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia. The IBSN citizen science program provides volunteers with training in prospecting techniques specifically designed for butterfly monitoring, allowing them to collect valuable data on the presence and abundance of butterfly species in Iowa. The Cascade-Siskiyou Butterfly Monitoring Network is a long-term monitoring program that monitors butterfly populations in the Cascade-Siskiyou bioregion of Southwestern Oregon and Northern California. The Cascades Butterfly project is a long-term citizen science project that monitors butterfly populations in the Cascade Mountains of northern Washington.
The Nevada Butterfly Monitoring Network is a citizen science program designed to record the diversity and abundance of butterflies over time across the state. The Illinois Butterfly Monitoring Network involves community scientists in collecting quantitative data on butterfly populations. The Texas Butterfly Monitoring Network is a citizen science program that monitors butterfly populations across the Lone Star state. Volunteers from the United States and Canada are participating in this project who tag individual butterflies to help scientists study and monitor monarch populations and autumn migration. Comparisons of results over time are used to monitor changes in butterfly populations and to study the effects of climate and habitat change on butterflies in North America.
By tracking butterflies, researchers can gain insight into how climate change is impacting their habitats, as well as how different species are adapting to their changing environment. The data collected by these programs can be used to inform conservation efforts, such as habitat restoration projects, as well as to inform public policy decisions related to land use, pesticide use, and other environmental issues. Citizen science programs such as these provide an invaluable service to researchers by providing them with large amounts of data that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to collect. By participating in these programs, volunteers can help scientists better understand how climate change is impacting butterfly populations, as well as how different species are adapting to their changing environment. By participating in these programs, volunteers can help scientists better understand how climate change is impacting butterfly populations, as well as how different species are adapting to their changing environment.