MONTREAL, Aug. 3, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - On August 13 and 14, Canadians are invited to become "researchers for a day" to help identify the monarch butterfly's breeding sites. The inventory blitz will take place simultaneously all across Canada as part of "Mission Monarch," led by the Insectarium, a Montréal Space for Life institution, in cooperation with the Institut de recherche en biologie végétale (IRBV), the Université du Québec à Rimouski, the University of Ottawa and the University of Calgary. An easy-to-follow protocol for the general public has been prepared to help participants conduct an inventory of monarch eggs and caterpillars near their home on the butterfly's favourite food source, milkweed. It's a fun way to enjoy the summer together with family and friends!
"We want to get an accurate picture of the monarch butterfly's breeding sites across Canada at a specific point in the season, when their numbers should be highest," explained Maxim Larrivée of the Montréal Insectarium, a research associate with the Institut de recherche en biologie végétale (IRBV) and the driving force behind Mission Monarch.
Mission Monarch: A chance for everyone to get involved!
Mission Monarch is part of a huge pan-Canadian research project dedicated to saving the monarch butterfly. "The study's goal is to identify and describe their most productive breeding habitats as a step toward preparing a national conservation strategy," added Larrivée. "Other public participation initiatives have generated useful data for research projects; it's a formula that has a proven track record."
Launched earlier this summer, Mission Monarch is open to everyone and will continue even after the August 13–14 blitz. Anyone interested in taking part can visit the Mission Monarch website to learn more about the study protocol and find the answers to their questions. According to the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC), monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) have "special concern" status. It is estimated that populations have declined by close to 90% in less than 20 years.
Additional information, the study protocol and sign-up form: www.mission-monarque.org
Visual, protocol and data sheets: bit.ly/Mission_monarque
SOURCE VILLE DE MONTREAL - INSECTARIUM DE MONTREAL
For further information: Karine Jalbert, Communication, 514 872-1453, firstname.lastname@example.org