HabiTally, a new mobile app designed to improve data collection about pollinator habitats has launched and is available as a free download for iOS devices from the App Store. The app was developed as a collaboration between Bayer and The Climate Corporation, with support from Iowa State University’s Center for Survey Statistics and Methodology.
HabiTally enables farmers, ranchers, landowners and private citizens to support monarch butterfly populations by entering data about habitat conservation efforts on their farms or yards, or even in locations like churches or parks where groups may create new habitat.
“HabiTally gives farmers and ranchers a new tool to align their efforts to manage and conserve monarch habitats,” said Craig Hill, president of Iowa Farm Bureau Federation. “We anticipate that the data collected through this app will not only support the conservation of monarch butterflies and other pollinators, but will be beneficial to broader conservation goals in Iowa and neighboring states.”
Information collected through the HabiTally app will be completely anonymous and aggregated entirely at the county level. Users will be able to see national and state accounts of efforts logged within the app.
The data collected can help inform on gains in milkweed across the nation as the United States Fisheries and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is currently evaluating monarch conservation efforts along the migration route. In December 2020, USFWS will determine whether to list the monarch under the federal Endangered Species Act. Voluntary efforts to establish and restore monarch habitat could lead to reversing population losses, potentially rendering a listing unnecessary. Farmers can get involved by planting monarch habitat and tracking habitat acres through the HabiTally app.
For more information on how the app works, visit https://www.cals.iastate.edu/news/releases/habi-tally-app-offers-new-interactive-opportunity-assist-monarch-recovery.