Chip Taylor


Chip Taylor Orley R. “Chip” Taylor, Founder and Director of Monarch Watch; Professor Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS.

Trained as an insect ecologist, Chip Taylor has published papers on species assemblages, hybridization, reproductive biology, population dynamics and plant demographics and pollination. Starting in 1974, Chip Taylor established research sites and directed students studying Neotropical African honey bees (killer bees) in French Guiana, Venezuela, and Mexico. In 1992, as the bee research was coming to an end, Taylor founded Monarch Watch, an outreach program focused on education, research and conservation relative to monarch butterflies. Through the last 18 years Monarch Watch has enlisted the help of volunteers to tag monarchs during the fall migration. This program has produced many new insights into the dynamics of the monarch migration. Four years ago, in recognition that habitats for monarchs are declining at a rate of 6000 acres a day in the United States, Monarch Watch created the Monarch Waystation program. The goal of this program is to inspire the public, schools and others to create habitats for monarch butterflies and to assist Monarch Watch in educating the public about the decline in resources for monarchs, pollinators and all wildlife that share the same habitats. 

"I have been studying the effects of climate on monarch populations for several years and climate change really has me worried. Higher temperatures are likely to negatively affect monarch populations by reducing reproductive success and altering the distribution and abundances of milkweed species on which the monarchs depend."