The UW–Madison Arboretum was formally dedicated in a June 1934 ceremony with a lineup of speakers that included Aldo Leopold, the father of wildlife ecology, whose research vision helped lay the Arboretum’s scientific foundation. During the past 80+ years, the Arboretum has worked to conserve and restore Arboretum land, advance the science of restoration ecology, and foster the land ethic through mission-related public education programs.
Today, the Monarch Joint Venture (MJV) welcomes the Arboretum as a monarch conservation partner.
“The UW–Madison Arboretum inherited an astounding leader in monarch conservation, Dr. Karen Oberhauser, and we're thrilled for them to join our team,” says Wendy Caldwell, MJV Coordinator. “Karen's history with monarch conservation and the strength and foundation of the Arboretum and its programs will be an incredible asset to the MJV.”
The Arboretum is known as the birthplace of ecological restoration and home of Curtis Prairie, the first restored prairie in the world. The 1,200 acres of property in Madison and 500 acres of outlying research properties provide a range of rich native habitat that supports monarchs, a diversity of plants and animals, and a number of threatened and endangered species.
The Arboretum engages thousands of visitors annually with public walks, classes, summer camps, workshops, naturalist and citizen science trainings, talks, and other programming. With their broad offerings of public engagement, habitat restoration, ecological research, citizen monitoring, and involvement in urban conservation, the Arboretum is a welcome addition to the MJV partnership.
“I’ve been studying monarchs since 1985, first as a grad student and later as a professor at the University of Minnesota,” says Karen Oberhauser, Arboretum Director, “and have been part of the MJV since its inception over ten years ago. It is a thrill to be merging pieces of my past and current position with this new partnership, and we look forward to expanding citizen science, habitat conservation, and education programs focused on monarchs and the species with which they share habitat.”
For more information on the UW–Madison Arboretum, visit their website.
The Monarch Joint Venture is a national partnership of federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations, and academic programs working together to conserve the monarch butterfly migration. The content in this article does not necessarily reflect the positions of all Monarch Joint Venture partners. Header photo of UW–Madison Arboretum’s Curtis Prairie, the first restored prairie in the world, provided by Jeff Miller/UW–Madison © Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System.