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Join us for a Powell Center seminar on Thursday, April 18th, from 10-11am MT/12-1pm ET.

Status of Butterflies in the United States

Cheryl Schultz (Washington State University), Elizabeth Crone (University of California - Davis), and Eliza Grames (Binghamton University)

As part of a USFWS -USGS Powell Center funded Working Group, we evaluated trends in abundance for all butterfly species across the United States, using data from 35 monitoring programs. Almost a quarter of these species were declining at their range-wide continental scale and over half of the species declining in at least one USFWS region. Butterfly species are declining across all butterfly families and ecological traits provide little predictive power in explaining overall trends. However, almost a quarter of the species were increasing in at least one USFWS region. We discuss biases in these data with respect to likely drivers of butterfly declines, as well next steps for developing collaborative efforts across organizations to rebuild butterfly populations.

Join us for this seminar on Thursday, April 18th, from 10-11am MT/12-1pm ET on Microsoft Teams.



Cheryl Schultz is at conservation biologist and professor at Washington State University and is currently a scholar-in-residence with US Fish and Wildlife Service’s Center for Pollinator Conservation. She has been leading efforts to advance science to recover at-risk butterflies for over 30 years.  Her leadership played a key role leading in the downlisting Fender’s blue butterfly, the first butterfly to achieve this milestone in the history of the Endangered Species Act. She hopes the combined efforts of the Status of Butterflies Working Group and species-based teams she is working with (monarch butterfly, Oregon silverspot and others) will follow this model of integrating science with local and regional partnerships to enable recovery of butterfly species across the country.

Elizabeth Crone is a population ecologist whose expertise spans theoretical, statistical and empirical approaches to understanding population dynamics.  Her research focuses primarily on dynamics of butterflies, perennial wildflowers, and native bees.   She has previously worked at University of Montana and Tufts University and is currently a professor at University of California Davis.

Eliza Grames is a conservation biologist at Binghamton University. She uses quantitative methods, evidence synthesis, and data integration to understand the effects of rapid environmental change on biodiversity, with a special emphasis on disentangling the drivers of insect biodiversity loss and consequences of insect decline for ecosystem function.

The seminar will be recorded; email after April 18th for access.

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