Annual butterfly count with Professor Emeritus Charlie Covell almost here!

Annual butterfly count with Professor Emeritus Charlie Covell almost here!

A Passion Butterfly spotted during the 2011 count.

Adapted from UofL Today

Almost time to count butterflies! Nature lovers can enjoy a Saturday in the country and contribute to a national scientific cause by joining in a June 21 butterfly-counting expedition in Oldham County.

University of Louisville biology professor emeritus Charles Covell and other butterfly specialists will lead the local activities for children and adults in the woods and fields of UofL's Horner Wildlife Sanctuary. The local count for the national butterfly census will be done in a defined area from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., although volunteers are not required to stay the entire time. Covell suggests that participants wear hats, hiking shoes, long pants and long-sleeved shirts and bring water, lunch and insect repellent.

Count leaders will teach people how to identify the butterflies they see. Covell will supply nets but volunteers can use cameras, binoculars and notebooks to gather information. Volunteer counters of all ages should meet at 9:30 a.m. in the parking lot of Sugar Babe Antiques in Crestwood, about one mile northwest of Exit 14 off Interstate 71 and about 20 miles north of Louisville.If it rains heavily, the count will be postponed until the same time Sunday, June 22, if that day's weather is clear.

Although Covell retired from UofL in 2004, he continues to lead the annual local effort, now in its 38th year. He now works as a curator for the McGuire Center for Lepidoptera & Biodiversity in Gainesville, Florida. Covell organized the Society of Kentucky Lepidopterists for the study of butterflies and moths in 1974. He wrote "Butterflies and Moths of Kentucky" and the 1984 Peterson "Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America."