The plight of the Monarch

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richj20 Veteran Member • Posts: 8,359
The plight of the Monarch

Not such good news from Mexico this year:

Monarch butterflies down 26% in Mexico wintering grounds

Butterflies are some of Nature's most beautiful creatures. Here is a Monarch (Danaus plexippus) on a milkweed plant in my garden last Spring in Southern California. I'm looking forward to another Spring of visits!

The article refers to the situation in California (my home state):

  • The number of western monarch butterflies wintering along the California coast has plummeted to a new record low, putting the orange-and-black insects closer to extinction, researchers announced Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021. A recent count by the Xerces Society recorded fewer than 2,000 butterflies, a massive decline from the millions of monarchs that in 1980s clustered in trees from Marin County to San Diego County.

Due to a big push throughout the state by nature societies, I've noticed more people adding Milkweed plants (Asclepias) in their gardens to host these butterflies. The loss of Milkweed habitat throughout the USA - due in part to agriculture taking more and more land - is one of the principal causes of the situation today.

I've been following the Monarch's plight for about six years, and created a web page with articles and photographs:

MIlkweed and the Monarch

Hopefully, this sad situation will turn around in the coming years.

- Richard

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