Monarch Waystations Installed at WRDSB Schools!
Monarch Waystations have been installed at dozens of schools in the Waterloo Region District School Board. Waystations are wildflower gardens designed to provide Monarch Butterflies with milkweed which are the only plants that Monarchs lay their eggs on, and the only plants that Monarch caterpillars will eat. In addition, the waystations will have many other flowering plants that supply nectar to adult butterflies. Seeds planted by students include Dense Blazing Star, New England Aster, Columbine, and Goldenrod. If a Monarch Butterfly is flying over our region, we would like each of our schools to be a rest stop for these beautiful insects, where they can lay eggs and fuel up for the rest of their travels.
Monarchs are an iconic species of butterfly. Their striking orange-and-black colouration is unmistakable as they glide over fields and gardens. For a species that holds such a close place in our hearts, we are falling short of protecting them. Their populations have been in decline for approximately 25 years, and Monarchs are now classified as endangered in Canada.
To track the success of our waystations, we invite you to submit any sightings of Monarch Butterflies, eggs, caterpillars or pupae. You can also report if milkweed is growing at your school. Just click the button below.
Individuals – Students, teachers, and the Waterloo community
We are in a race against time to save Monarchs. Are you ready? While saving species at risk of extinction is not a game, we have decided to incentivize this citizen science initiative with badges.
You have the opportunity to earn badges based on whether you have found Monarchs, milkweed plants, and even Monarch eggs and larvae. You have three months to earn all five!
Earn a badge for each life cycle stage you submit to MonarchMadness. Can you get them all? We will email you your badges as you earn them.
Here are the badges, each features a beautiful photo by our very own Al Woodhouse.
Schools – Waterloo Region District School Board
(if your school is not part of the WRDSB but would like to participate anyway please contact on OEE staff member).
In September, every school will get a poster with a badge that commemorates the level of participation they had.
Here is the poster:
The badges a school earns are based on the number of participants. Your school can earn our most exclusive badge, the adult Monarch, by getting forty or more participants to submit an observation! Check out the badges below.
If you are up for the challenge check some of the resources on this website, figure out how to identify Milkweed and tell a Monarch from a Viceroy. When you are ready, take a walk through your neighbourhood and record what you see.
Submit your results here.
Check out our Resources page for identification guides, badge collector pages and recommended digital resources.