'Earliest we've ever seen them:' Journey North observers reporting early caterpillars

June 5, 2024 by Team Journey North

In this update, we get a western update from Gail Morris emerging butterflies in the East and a report from a researcher who is using Journey North data.

Thomas in Charleston, South Carolina submitted this fun photo on May 25 of a monarch hanging out alongside its chrysalis.

Monarchs continue to progress throughout North America – both in their life cycle and migration journey – creating joy for wildlife watchers along the way. In many locations, volunteers are reporting early progress.

Eastern monarch population

Journey North participants have been reporting monarchs at various stages of the life cycle, from eggs being laid to old, faded adults nearing the end of the line.

Read more >> 

Western monarch population

Gail Morris has an update from the West, where we've got our first report of the year from Idaho, as well as a few more reports from Utah.

Gail writes, "As June begins Monarchs are expanding their range with first sightings reported in Oregon, Idaho and across Utah. Monarchs will now begin to lose their urge to migrate as we near the summer solstice. They’ll become more stationary with increased activity in breeding grounds."


One way your reports are making a difference

Charlotte Hovland, a master's student at the University of Georgia, is using Journey North reports to study changes in monarch migratory behavior in the Southeast, including residency and coastal overwintering. 

Hovland wrote a quick report detailing some of the information being used in her research. Take a look!