VOLUNTEER - Outdoor Campus East

Butterfly and Caterpillar Care

Purpose: To care for the various stages of butterflies, moths and host plants that are in on display at TOC.


  • Collect milkweed from our garden or from fields in the Sioux Falls area.
  • Scan milkweed leaves for eggs or larvae.
  • Care for butterfly eggs, larvae, chrysalis and adults. May care for moths as well.
  • Release adults as needed.
  • Tag monarchs in the fall.
  • Care of any nectar plants that may be needed for the adults.


  • Attend a butterfly care class to learn proper handling procedures.
  • Ability to walk in the fields if interested in collecting milkweed, eggs, larvae or tag monarchs in the fall.
  • Specific commitment to care for butterflies on a regular basis.
  • Able to gently handle the small eggs and larvae.
  • Able to gently handle larvae, chrysalis and adults.
  • Provide care of host plants that are part of the display.

Training Required:

  • Volunteer Orientation
  • Butterfly Care Class-length of class approximately one hour. Will be held as needed to provide adequate care for our butterflies.
  • Field training will be provided while collecting the specimens or tagging of the monarchs in the fall.

Time Commitment:

  • A minimum of 2-3 hour shift per month. Prefer a weekly commitment.
  • Need to care for the butterflies before noon if possible so they have time to digest their food before evening.


  • A peaceful, enjoyable atmosphere to mingle with fellow butterfly enthusiasts.
  • Able to work on your own or in small groups.
  • Become part of a specialized team of volunteers with unique knowledge and skills.
  • Enjoyment of watching the miraculous metamorphosis of butterflies and moths.
  • Opportunity to experience the thrill of tagging monarchs and then waiting to hear if they are found in Mexico.
  • Increase your knowledge of butterflies and moths and the plants they prefer.

Questions or comments?

Contact Rachel Chamblin, Volunteer Coordinator

The Outdoor Campus
4500 S. Oxbow Avenue
Sioux Falls, SD 57106-4114