Resources Library

About this Study

Phenology has interested me for going on half a century. I began keeping phenological records of butterflies as a teenager in Philadelphia. As an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania I took a community ecology course from Jack McCormick, who was under contract to do an ecological study of the Tinicum wetlands (near Philadelphia International Airport). I had been doing an informal faunistic study of the place, purely for the fun of it, and had tons of data. A summary of this work was ultimately incorporated into Jack’s report. The study had a significant phenological component.

Data Depot and Downloads

This section is currently under construction.

All data is publicly available.  We are transitioning to a new data management system, in the meantime please email us with requests for data or related queries.  Please contact Matt Forister at forister@gmail.com.

Bibliography

This page lists various featured publications, including this field guide and a fairly recent copy of Art's full bibliography. A few other publications which feature Art's data are also listed here.

Butterfly Gardening in the Northern California Foothills

Butterfly gardening in the foothills is different from butterfly gardening in California's Central Valley. In the Valley, most of the butterfly species are weedy, highly dispersive, multiple-brooded, reach highest densities in the autumn, and depend on a combination of introduced plants (weeds and cultivated species) and irrigation for their continued presence. In the foothills, though some of these weedy species still occur, most of the butterflies are native, adapted to the foothill climate, and thus restricted to one or two broods a year in spring, and less likely to feel at home in a garden. You have many more species nearby in the foothills, but may have a lot less action to see in your garden!

Butterfly Gardening in the Sacramento Valley

In the Valley, most of the butterfly species are weedy, highly dispersive, multiple-brooded, reach highest densities in the autumn, and depend on a combination of introduced plants (weeds and cultivated species) and irrigation for their continued presence. Most butterflies require a larger resource base than an ordinary residential lot can provide (larval host plants, pupation sites, adult food supply, territory).

Related Websites

List of websites of people and organizations who have contributed material or photographs to this project.

Website Information and Acknowledgements

This website describes over 45 years of data collected by Dr. Arthur Shapiro, professor of Evolution and Ecology at the University of California, Davis, in his continuing effort to regularly monitor butterfly population trends on a transect across central California. Ranging from the Sacramento River delta, through the Sacramento Valley and Sierra Nevada mountains, to the high desert of the western Great Basin, fixed routes at ten sites have been surveyed at approximately two-week intervals since as early as 1972. The sites represent the great biological, geological, and climatological diversity of central California.