Monarch Migration Update: June 4, 2009
Please Report
Your Sightings!

Today's Report Includes:

Can you identify OE? >>

Image: MonarchHealth

The Migration: Highlights, Maps, and Questions



Journal Page
How Far North Do Monarchs Migrate in Canada? Name the Provinces

Migration Highlights

Now Entering Nova Scotia!
Monarchs have now entered their 3rd Canadian province according to a sighting from Nova Scotia on Wednesday. That butterfly, at longitude 63 degrees west, puts the eastern edge of the migration nearly 3,000 miles from its origin in Mexico.

Two New States
People from two new U.S. states also reported monarchs this week. Which ones? Use these geographic clues to find out (then add them to your prediction chart):

  • The "Green Mountain State" where one of the state's 621,270 residents saw the first monarch on Tuesday.
  • The "Pine Tree State" where we've now confirmed that one of the state's 1,316,456 residents saw the first monarch back on May 9th.

What Will Happen Next?

  • Canada: Study the map on this week's Journal Page and figure out how many more Canadian provinces will see monarchs this spring.


How Far from Mexico?
Look how far the migration has advanced northward and eastward! >>

Volunteers Needed: Project MonarchHealth >>

Project MonarchHealth is a citizen-science survey of the occurrence of the protozoan parasite Ophryocystis elektroscirrha (OE), which parasitizes monarch butterflies. This parasite is not harmful to humans; however, it can harm the butterflies by inhibiting normal growth and lowering their survival in the wild. MonarchHealth participants help scientists map the location and infection levels of OE in monarchs and determine how much disease the parasites cause.

Volunteers Are Needed:

1) Get a free monitoring kit from MonarchHealth

2) Capture live monarchs
Either capture adult butterflies or raise caterpillars until they become adult butterflies.

3) Sample for parasites
Swab the abdomen of live butterflies to collect the parasite spores.

4) Send the sample to the MonarchHealth Lab
Scientists will analyze your sample and find the level of infection for monarchs in your part of the breeding range.

You can participate in Project MonarchHealth


The Monarch and OE Life Cycles

Symbolic Migration: Kids Are Waiting, Please Report!

Over 60,000 children sent symbolic monarchs to Mexico. So far, 17,500 butterflies have been reported to the map. This means nearly 42,500 children are still waiting to find their butterflies! Teachers: Please help by reporting the butterflies you received. Thank you!

Kids are waiting— please report! >>

Year-end Evaluation: Please Share Your Thoughts! >>

Please take a few minutes to complete our Year-end Evaluation. With your help, we can we document Journey North's reach, impact and value. We need comments like yours to keep the program going and growing.

Thank you! >>

Year-end Evaluation

Links: Monarch Butterfly Resources to Explore
More Monarch Lessons and Teaching Ideas!

The Next Monarch Migration Update Will Be Posted on June 11, 2009.