Ellen Riggins, a naturalist living east of Dryden, in northwestern Ontario, took part this summer in a citizen science project that aims to study monarch butterfly migrations by tagging them.
After spotting some twenty monarch caterpillars in a massive milkweed, the favorite flowers of these insects, Ms. Riggins decided to contact Monarch Watch to order self-adhesive labels.
There is a special technique to take [the monarchs] and a specific place to put the label before putting them on the plant , says the naturalist, who managed to catch ten butterflies.
The small stickers include the Monarch Watch website address, a phone number, and a unique identification code for Ms. Riggins, allowing you to know where the butterflies went before they migrated to Mexico.
If someone finds a butterfly with one of my labels, I’ll be contacted, adds Ms. Riggins who admits the odds are pretty slim. It would be fabulous!
Dale Modin started working at The Camping Canuck in 2017. Dale grew up in a small town in northern Ontario. He studied chemistry in college, graduated, and married his wife one month later. Dale has been a proud Torontonian for the past 10 years. As a contributor to the site, Dale covers environmental news and writes how-to’s. Previously he wrote for CTV News and the Huffington Post Canada.