St Paul Audubon’s Butterfly Count

Fri, Jun 30 , 2017
9:45 am - 2:00 pm

AHATS Readiness Center
Hamline Ave & Ben Franklin St,
Arden Hills, MN 55112

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After last year’s disappointing Butterfly Count results, our leader, Dean Hansen stated that the “last Saturday in June” date for the count was the reason that we did not see any, or very few, hairstreaks and sedge skippers. He went on to state “I’m very much in favor of doing the future counts after the July 4th holiday. Very much in favor.”

Mary Lee, the naturalist for the Minnesota National Guard, was able to arrange this date change for us! Thanks, Mary! And so, the count will again take place at the Arden Hills Army Training Site (AHATS). We hope you’ll join us on July 9th for this great citizen science project.

We hope you will volunteer for this national effort to track butterfly populations across the country.

Saturday, June 30, 2018 is the date for the annual NABA Butterfly census at the Arden Hills Army Training Site (AHATS) 9:45 AM – 2:00 PM. Weather may cause a date change. Reservations required.

The count again will take place at the Arden Hills Army Training Site (AHATS).

Fees: None

To Register: Contact Dorothy Waltz at 651-917-0930 or no later than Sunday, June 17th. A map and information packet will be mailed to registered participants before the count.

Since this is an Army facility, we must give the National Guard the names of all participants before the count. Because of EPA regulations, no one under age 18 may participate. Since AHATS is a secure area, the group can only move in and out all together; we will carpool to move about inside the Site.

You should arrive a few minutes before 9:45 to form carpools in the MN Readiness Center parking lot.

Directions: From Hwy 96 and Hamline, go north on Hamline about 1/4 mile, straight ahead and through the gate at Ben Franklin Road, then take the first left into the large parking lot of the “Readiness Center – MN Army National Guard” building, which is the two tone brown building with reddish-brown trim.

Promptness is a necessity! We MUST enter as one group! Latecomers will NOT get in. All will stay in AHATS for the full time, so be prepared for hot weather.

What to Bring & Wear: Come prepared to carpool with others. Be sure to bring plenty of cool drinks, snacks, and a bag lunch. A wide-brimmed hat, light-weight long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, sunscreen, high socks, old sneakers or rubber boots for bog-tromping, and insect repellent are recommended. You may want to bring a camera, butterfly field guide, and a butterfly net. Binoculars are a good idea: close-focus for butterflies or regular focus for birds.

Questions: contact Dorothy Waltz at 651-917-0930 or

If you would like to study butterflies before the count, Mike Reese maintains an excellent website about butterflies at Jeff Fischer has a beautiful nature website at It has more than butterflies, as does AHATS.

Photos on this site were taken by Paul Aucoin and are a Black Swallowtail at the top and a Painted Lady head-on below.