About MonarchHealth
Project Participants
Project Results

Latest Results - 2011

In 2011, a total of 78 citizen scientists tested over 2,000 wild monarchs for the protozoan parasite Ophryocystis elektroscirrha (OE)! In the eastern United States, 11% of monarchs sampled in 2011 were heavily infected with OE. This was lower than in 2010, when 22% of eastern monarchs were heavily infected. For more information, please see Project Results .

We are currently compiling results from 2012.

Current Project Participants

During the past 5 years we've sent sampling kits to over 300 prospective volunteers. For 2006-2010 combined, a total of 164 volunteers submitted samples to our lab for analysis, and their locations which span 22 US states and two Canadian provinces. The diferent colored symbols indicate the number of years a volunteer has sampled monarchs. Special thanks to our 9 volunteers who have sampled all 5 years: Richard Breen, Sondra & Blaize Cabell, Sharon Duerkop, Ilse Gebhard, Chris Godwin, Cindy Jacob, Cathy Leece, Bruce Parker, and Marie & Frank Victor.

Who Participates in Project Monarch Health?

Our participants are located across North America and include people who sample monarchs at nature centers, in classrooms and backyard gardens. Many participants also submit data to other citizen-science projects including Journey North and the Monarch Larva Monitoring Project.

The pie chart to the right shows the affiliations of volunteers who submitted samples in 2006.


Photo by Mary Beth Cary , WCPS, Sylvester, GA

We have received numerous samples from teachers and their students including those at the level of elementary and middle school.

Students can gain experience rearing wild captured monarchs, learning about the biology of parasites, and participating in scientific research.

NEW! If you are a teacher, please check out our new Classroom Resources page for teaching aids about monarchs and their parasites.

Other Monarch Project Websites

Monarch Larva Monitoring Project began in 1997 at the University of Minnesota. It involves citizens in collecting data that will help to explain the distribution and abundance patterns of monarch butterflies in North America.

Journey North helps students study wildlife migration and seasonal change. They track the coming of spring through the migration patterns of monarch butterflies, robins, hummingbirds, whooping cranes, gray whales, bald eagles— and other birds and mammals; the budding of plants; changing sunlight; and other natural events.

Monarch Migratory Association of America: A network of existing monarch migration projects that all focus on : counting the annual numbers of monarchs that migrate though specific sites in North America.

Monarchs Across Georgia: A collaboration of teachers, students, families, communities, businesses and others, all working together to study Monarch butterflies and restore butterfly habitat across Georgia.