The BC Butterfly Atlas is a community-based citizen science project aimed at increasing our knowledge of the status and distribution of butterflies in British Columbia.
How Does It Work?
Beginning in 2012, the BC Butterfly Atlas will harness the efforts of both professional biologists and citizen naturalists to document the distribution and abundance of butterflies in British Columbia. Gathering butterfly records from across BC will help identify which species are truly rare and which are more common, provide a snapshot of butterfly populations to which past and future surveys can be compared, and inform efforts to conserve butterflies and their habitats. Results will be collated into a single database and made available on maps on the project website. The project also aims to educate and engage the public about the importance of biodiversity and increase involvement in butterfly conservation in BC.
How to Participate
There are three potential ways you can participate in this important project:
- Record and submit your incidental butterfly observations from wherever you see them in BC;
- Monitor one or more individual sites (e.g., such as a backyard garden or park) over time; or
- Comprehensively survey one or more 10 km x 10 km atlas squares over one or more years using a set protocol.
Sightings, photographs, and specimens all constitute records useful to the Atlas. You don’t have to be a butterfly expert to participate in the project. Unidentified butterfly photos can be submitted for identification by a team of experts.