• Seth Appelgate - Iowa State University field day
  • photo of ISU researcher at milkweed demonstration plot in central Iowa
  • Planting 2016 monarch habitat in Iowa

Recent News

October 10, 2018

The eastern population of monarch butterflies has declined significantly during the past 20 years. Habitat restoration that includes planting native milkweed species is critical for monarch conservation. New field research from Iowa State University examines the oviposition preference of female monarch butterflies using nine native species of milkweed.

September 27, 2018

Madison County landowners Don Eyerly and J.D. Schruers hosted field day participants on Sept. 26 for a tour of pollinator habitat plantings near Winterset, Iowa. The event was presented by Madison County Extension, Iowa Pheasants Forever, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, and the Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium.

September 17, 2018

Alec Euken is an undergraduate research assistant with the ISU monarch butterfly research team. Euken, a native of Clear Lake, Iowa, is an avid photographer and a leader in the ISU Conservation Club. He has worked with the monarch team in the field and in the lab since 2016!

Upcoming Events

Monarch Conservation

Iowa's role is vital to the monarch butterfly’s recovery! The Iowa Monarch Conservation Strategy is now available to guide efforts. Read a summary of the strategy, and here are five actions you can take. Read the Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium's Strategic Goals.

Monarch Sightings

Monarch Butterfly Migration Map Click on the map on the right to see the progress of monarchs migrating north from Mexico.

Learning About Iowa Monarchs

We want our recommendations for monarch habitat improvement to be scientifically sound. Research projects in summer 2017 include:

  • efforts to evaluate nine species of milkweed on plots at Iowa State University research farms
  • a project to discover optimal monarch breeding, forage and roosting habitat characteristics in Iowa's patchy landscape and
  • a survey of milkweed species and monarch occurrence, plant density, and population to establish baseline data.