Step-by-Step Monitoring Guide
Conduct a monarch count during the Thanksgiving and New Year’s count period or anytime during the overwintering season. Fill out a separate monarch count data sheet each time you monitor a site for monarchs.
Conducting a habitat assessment is optional, but please consider taking the extra time to collect important site-specific information that helps capture the habitat conditions and threats each site faces. There are two versions available: a one-page assessment that covers the most important aspects of a site, and a longer, more comprehensive assessment that is ideal for land managers and individuals interested in gathering more in-depth data at their site. Please aim to fill out a habitat assessment once a year per site.
Don’t forget to keep an eye out for tags while you’re doing your counts and habitat assessments! Numerous groups throughout the west are tagging butterflies in the late summer and fall. Recoveries of these tags at overwintering sites and along the migration route provide important information on the western migration. Check out this helpful flyer compiled by David Marriott of the Monarch Program, which illustrates the different tag types and the contact people for each program: