Beneficial insects Butterflies

Join the 6th International Monarch Monitoring Blitz!

From July 29 to August 7, join the 6th International Monarch Monitoring Blitz!

Every year, thousands of volunteers in Canada, Mexico and the United States join efforts to support monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) conservation by collecting observations of monarch butterflies and milkweeds plants! You can contribute to this incredible trinational initiative by sharing your sightings from July 29 to August 7 2022.

With the International Union for the Conservation of Nature recently listing the monarch on its Red List of endangered species, your efforts are vital now more than ever!

How the Blitz Works

Participants gathering field data.
Participants gathering data n the field at the Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area near Québec CIty. Photo: Francine Rousseau

During this 10-day period, the International Monarch Monitoring Blitz (the Blitz) invites people across North America to look for milkweed plants and examine them for monarch eggs, caterpillars, chrysalises, and butterflies. Blitz data are uploaded and shared with researchers via the Trinational Monarch Knowledge Network, a central repository that, in combining data from various sources, assists researchers in performing large-scale temporal and spatial analyses.

Common milkweed with pink flowers.
The common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) is the monarch’s favorite food plant throughout the eastern North America. Photo; Michel Sokolyk, Montréal Botanical Garden

The data collected by volunteers help researchers answer key questions about monarch butterfly and milkweed distribution, timing of reproduction, and the use of natural resources. In turn, this information helps conservationists identify and prioritize actions to conserve the species.

Monarch caterpillar striped yellow, while and black.
Monarch caterpillar. Photo: André Sarrazin

In a rapidly changing world, long-term data are especially important. They helping us understand trends in populations and habitat.

Monarch egg on a milkweed leaf.
Monarch egg on a milkweed plant. Photo: Photo: André-Philippe Drapeau Picard

Our current understanding of the monarch population size is largely driven by overwintering count data. It has shown long-term declines in both the eastern and western migratory populations.

Monarch chrysalis.
Monarch butterfly chrysalis. Photo: Laurent Desaulniers

Due to the monarchs’ large spatial and temporal range during the summer months, volunteer observations are critical. They help us understand monarch butterflies at this time of year.

Blitz data provide the only coordinated trinational snapshot of summer monarch breeding activity, which is important for understanding how successful the breeding population is from year to year.

To Take Part in the Blitz

To take part in the Blitz, share your observations through one of the participating community science programs below.

Follow the Blitz and share your participation in this international conservation effort on social media by using the hashtag #MonarchBlitz!

Please visit for more information about the Blitz.

The Blitz is organized by the Trinational Monarch Conservation Science Partnership, a collaboration of organizations, including the Commission for Environmental CooperationInsectarium/Montréal Space for LifeEnvironment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC), the Monarch Joint VentureJourney North, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, and Mexico’s Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (Conanp).

1 comment on “Join the 6th International Monarch Monitoring Blitz!

  1. I am disabled. Can I participate just from observations of my own back yard? And is milkweed the absolute exclusive plant of the Monarch? Once found two larva on a relative’s cilantro plant. Don’t know how they fared, as I could not monitor them. The relative had just died and I didn’t want to ask the widow to watch them. Fearing the parent Monarch might have had no choice but to lay eggs on that plant. Thank you!

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