Become a Monarch Citizen Scientist

by John Lowry and Cheryl Anderson, South Shore Joint Initiative

Our Monarch Monitoring Project involves collecting Monarch data and submitting it to the Biodiversity of Prince Edward County's South Shore project on iNaturalist. iNaturalist is an online social network where people share biodiversity information to help each other learn about nature. SSJI’s board member, John Lowry, initiated the project and is an active contributor to iNaturalist with his expertise, photography, and time.

We outlined the project in the webinar, which explains how to collect and submit the data to iNaturalist. In the webinar, Cheryl and John discuss monitoring for Monarchs through the summer and Monarch roosts as we move into fall. Monarchs begin to arrive in Prince Edward County in June. Through July and August, eggs, caterpillars, pupae and adult Monarchs can be found. Moving into late August and September roosts of many Monarchs preparing for migration can be seen in the South Shore area. The data collected helps to assess the present biodiversity of our region. Information on iNaturalist can provide researchers with important data on population trends of the Monarch butterfly.