Thursday, August 2, 2018

Monarch Butterfly Lecture Planned At Wild Center

monarch butterflyAdkAction has announced a free lecture, “Monarchs in a Changing World,” by Dr. Karen Oberhauser on Friday, August 10 at 6 pm in the Flammer Theater at The Wild Center.

Monarchs, like many other organisms, are facing the challenges of a rapidly changing climate. Their capacity to cope with these changes remains uncertain. Climate also affects monarchs indirectly, by altering the habitats and plant species on which they depend, or the distribution and abundance of their predators and parasites. Dr. Oberhauser will explain her work using climate models to understand how these direct and indirect inputs might affect monarch in the future. 

Oberhauser is the chair of the Monarch Joint Venture, and a founding officer of the Monarch Butterfly Fund. In 2013, Karen received a White House Champion of Change award for her work with Citizen Science.

Dr. Oberhauser is the Director of the UW-Madison Arboretum. Before coming to Madison, she and her students at the University of Minnesota conducted research on several aspects of monarch butterfly ecology. This work addressed reproductive biology, effects of food quality on larval growth, interactions with parasites and predators, migration, overwintering biology, and impacts of climate change. Most recently, she has focused on using monitoring data to inform continent-level conservation goals.

Her research depends on traditional lab and field techniques, as well as the contributions of a variety of audiences through citizen science. Her strong interest in promoting a citizenry with a high degree of scientific and environmental literacy led to the development of a science education program that involves courses for teachers, and opportunities for youth to engage in research and share their findings with broad audiences. In 1996, she and graduate student Michelle Prysby started a nationwide Citizen Science project called the Monarch Larva Monitoring Project, which continues to engage hundreds of volunteers throughout North America. Karen has authored over 90 papers on her research on monarchs, insect conservation, and citizen science.

AdkAction’s Adirondack Pollinator Project, in partnership with The Wild Center, Lake Placid Land Conservancy, and Paul Smith’s College, is building understanding of the local and global importance of pollinators and inspiring action to help pollinators thrive. For more information on the Pollinator Project, click here.

For more information, contact Brittany Christenson, Executive Director of AdkAction by telephone at (518) 593-8753 or by e-mail at

Photo of Monarch butterfly provided.

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