Now in its seventh year in 2022, Nevada Bugs & Butterflies is excited to continue and expand the Nevada Butterfly Monitoring Network. This program uses an area’s residents to collect valuable data on butterfly diversity at the same site multiple times over the course of the summer. Over time, these data can be used to understand the effects of habitat change, climate fluctuations, and other influences on butterfly populations.
In this program, volunteers monitor the same site (around 1-1.5 miles long) at least 6 times a summer, measuring butterfly abundance (how many) and diversity (which species are present). Each survey takes approximately 60-90 minutes. The volunteers then input data into a national database. To guide volunteers, Nevada Bugs offers annual workshops about the program basics– butterfly biology, monitoring protocols, data reporting, and local butterfly identification.
Nevada contains many unique and fragile habitats that are home to over 200 species of butterflies. These insects are tightly tied to the health of the landscape, relying on a diversity of plants to eat as caterpillars and for nectar as adults. Many of them have small ranges limited to specific areas of the Great Basin. However, we currently have very little standardized data regarding butterfly diversity or abundance over time for our state. The NBMN is part of the North American Butterfly Monitoring Network, filling a huge void in this type of data for the intermountain West.
This program is a great opportunity for brand new or experienced amateur naturalists out there who already love visiting your favorite spots over and over! It can also be the perfect addition to your birding or botany hobbies. We’ll give you all the resources you need to succeed, whether you’re familiar with butterflies or not. In addition to the monitoring network, we’ll also touch base on a few other butterfly citizen science programs that you can participate in, including the Monarch Larva Monitoring Project and the Pieris Project. In short, it’s a comprehensive look into the ways you can help contribute to butterfly conservation in your own back yard.
2022 course information is below. Email Cynthia (email@example.com) for more information and to register for the course by May 16!
2022 Training details
(For more information, contact us by email!)
When: Saturday, May 21 (classroom 11:00-12:30, field from 1:00-2:00).
Location: River Fork Ranch, 399 Genoa Ln., Minden, NV.
The Nature Conservancy’s River Fork Ranch is located along the Carson River minutes from historic Genoa. Parking is available directly adjacent to the ranch house. The first portion of the training will be inside, followed by a short field portion to practice the transect protocol and butterfly identification. Please come prepared for the weather as we will be outside- hopefully prepare for sun but possibly wind as well. If you need any accommodations please contact us at least three days before the training.
- The Butterfly Network— The home site for all butterfly monitoring projects in North America
- Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)— a citizen-based compilation of butterfly and moth sightings across the U.S.; also provides county and state-wide checklists
- PollardBase— Home page for other Pollard-based monitoring programs, including the NBMN (only useful for PollardBase members, not a public site)
- Discover Life Butterflies— A selective key to identifying butterflies