Help document rare butterflies across Nebraska by getting trained to monitor for regal fritillaries and monarchs at one of two upcoming events.

Trainings for the community science effort are:

  • May 20: 1 to 5 p.m. at Homestead National Historical Park, 8523 NE-4, Beatrice
  • June 3: 1 to 5 p.m. at Schramm Park State Recreation Area, 21502 W. Highway 31, Gretna

Register to attend one of the trainings through their event listings at Only one training session is required to survey for the butterflies.

The first hour of the training sessions will be dedicated to gaining general information on monarchs, regal fritillaries, common plants and other community science opportunities; anyone is welcome. Those wanting to survey for the butterflies will learn about survey methods during the remaining time.

Those unable to attend a session, but who still wish to be part of the butterfly effort, can train via virtual recording on the “Nebraska Game and Parks Education” Youtube channel; participants should watch all videos in the Butterfly Survey Training playlist.

Butterfly surveys will be conducted statewide between June 15 and Aug. 15 at assigned locations.

The effort to monitor populations of monarchs and regal fritillaries across their range began in Nebraska in 2015. The goal is to better understand them in order to provide more effective conservation. The expansive survey is not possible without the help of volunteers. Learn more about the effort at; search “monarch survey.”

For more information on the training sessions, contact Cody Dreier, survey organizer, at [email protected] or 402-471-1755.

Johnson Lake undergoing clean-up after tornado

Johnson Lake near Lexington is cleaning up after an EF-1 tornado struck the area on May 5.

The tornado traveled approximately 5 miles across the lake causing damage to trees, cabins and structures at private properties along the lake.

The public is advised to use caution when boating or swimming at Johnson Lake as several sections of dock, walkway pieces and debris are floating or submerged in the lake. Clean up and recovery of the property will be ongoing.

Downed trees in Johnson Lake State Recreation Area’s Main Area and South Inlet campgrounds already have been removed and will not affect camping or other recreation.

If debris is found, please call the Johnson Lake SRA office at 308-785-2685 or Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District at 308-995-8601.

For more information about Johnson Lake SRA, visit