Monarch Tagging in Des Moines

Des Moines Monarch Tagging 2021

Early fall is the time of year to tag monarchs. There are several programs and events happening in the Des Moines area so you and your family can learn why people tag monarchs, how to do it, and actually do it yourself. Take a look at this list of monarch tagging in Des Moines.

NOTE: We will continue to update this post as more monarch tagging events are announced.

Monarch Tagging

Various locations + times. See chart below.

Monarch tagging is a great way to get the public involved and excited about monarch butterflies and what conservation practices Des Moines Parks and Recreation is taking to help the monarch butterfly. Most people know what a monarch butterfly is but they do not always know that the number of monarch butterflies in the wild has been dropping drastically since the mid-1990s. The tagging programs are a local part of a larger citizen science project that has been going on since 1992 to better understand the dynamics of the monarch’s spectacular fall migration. Each year more than a quarter of a million tags are used by volunteers across North America who tag monarchs as they migrate through their area on their way to Mexico.

Join us at a Des Moines Parks & Recreation for a FREE tagging event to learn more about the Monarch butterfly and participate in some hands-on Monarch tagging. This is a free program for all ages.

Sept. 9 – 10:30 a.m. – Union Park
Sept. 11 – 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. – Blank Park Zoo
Sept. 14 – 10:30 a.m. – Pete Crivero
Sept. 16 – 10:30 a.m. – Franklin Gardens
Sept. 18 – 10:00 a.m. – Gray’s Lake
Sept. 18 – 1:00 p.m. – Ashby Park
Sept. 23 – 10:30 a.m. – Greenwood Park, Sylvan Amphitheater
Sept. 27 – 6:00 p.m. – South Side Library

Polk County Conservation

September 14 at 6 p.m.

Jester Park Nature Center

Come learn about one of the world’s most talked-about butterflies and what makes them so unique! You will also try your hand at catching and tagging monarchs as they migrate to their winter home in Mexico. Come prepared to move around and have some fun! Register here. Free! Best for ages 5 years and older.

Warren County Conservation

Sunday, September 12 at 1 p.m. at Annet Nature Center

Saturday, September 18 at 1 p.m. at Buxton Park

Come discover more about monarch butterflies, their life cycle, and their miraculous migration to Mexico. A Warren County Conservation Naturalist will teach you how to catch and handle a monarch, determine gender, and properly tag them in the wild as part of a national research project. All monarchs will be released after they are tagged. Bring a butterfly net if you have one, or share a park net if you don’t. Fun for the whole family!

Registration is required at www.warrenccb.org or calls 515-961-6169.


Erin Huiatt

Erin is a reliable resource and stepping stone for women and families to find support and make connections within our community. She wants families to feel confident to reach out and ask for help and advice to get pointed in the right direction. She enjoys traveling and exploring with her two children in tow!

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