The emerging multi-LCC Ecological Places in Cities Network integrates the ecological and urban communities to guide and promote conservation practices, such as those across the monarch flyway. The ETPBR LCC is working with a number of other Service programs and external partners to build capacity for the development and implementation of a framework that can be tailored to individual cities of various sizes to evaluate their unique situations and design an urban monarch conservation strategy that optimizes the potential contributions of their urban area. Specifically, this project will continue to lay the groundwork for design principles to guide the development, testing and deployment of future urban conservation for the Monarch butterfly across the Eastern half of the country.
The purpose of this project is to complete next steps for continuation of the Monarch View of the City Urban Monarch Landscape Conservation Design (LCD) Project. Key tasks include technical assistance to support implementation of the first generation of products and to test effectiveness of Urban Monarch Conservation Design model of community engagement to ultimately increase monarch habitat across their migratory pathways.
Task 1. Technical assistance to support implementation of the urban monarch geospatial model. The recipient will lead activities aimed at the implementation phase of the Urban Monarch Conservation Guidebook and conservation spatial planning tools. The Field Museum has developed urban conservation tools for estimating the amount of milkweed present in metropolitan areas. One strength of these tools is their capacity to work at a variety of scales. The same baseline tool that can estimate stems of milkweed at the municipal scale can also be used for small townships, municipalities, neighborhoods, or wards. The recipient will work with one or more municipalities to apply the tools locally and understand what is working well and what needs improvement when the guidebook and tools are put to use. These efforts will be the basis for improvements and will result in one or more case studies to share with other communities. The recipient will undertake the following types of efforts to help refine the spatial model and conservation planning tools: 1) work with partner groups at the municipal scale to both improve upon regional estimates and to demonstrate the functionality and capacity of the urban conservation tools; 2) gather additional field data specific to “enhanced” or “exemplary” sites, and additional land use categories that are under-represented from previous work; and 3) build an additional urban monarch conservation tool, similar to the existing milkweed calculator that estimates the amount of habitat present and the amount that could be added.
Task 2. Test effectiveness of the Urban Monarch Landscape Conservation Design model of community engagement in ultimately increasing monarch habitat. The recipient will lead efforts to integrate social science expertise, when possible, into the development of existing and future Urban Monarch LCD products. These efforts may include: 1) utilizing social surveys or other social science techniques to understand the social outcomes resulting from urban monarch conservation efforts and incorporate these considerations within an adaptive management framework; 2) analyzing associations among various monarch-relevant environmental practices; 3) through pilot programs, better understanding the relationship between education and action; 4) integrating additional quantitative and spatial social data into the Chicago Region analysis (through census data etc.); and 5) incorporating and building social science literature into the understanding and defining of what is “urban,” and “suburban,” and what the qualities of these different kinds of landscapes suggest for monarch conservation.
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“Monarchs View of a City fact sheet Apr 2018”
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