Poster from Ontariobutterflies.ca
U of G Researchers Identify Monarch Butterfly Birthplaces to Help Conserve Species
University of Guelph researchers have pinpointed the North American birthplaces of migratory monarch butterflies that overwinter in Mexico, vital information that will help conserve the dwindling species.
The researchers analyzed “chemical fingerprints” in the wings of butterflies collected as far back as the mid-1970s to learn where monarchs migrate within North America each autumn.
Saving the monarch butterfly
The monarch butterfly is threatened with extinction. Here’s what you can do to help save it.
By: David Suzuki and Jode Roberts Published on Sat Apr 16 2016 published on TheStar.com
Three years ago, the eastern monarch butterfly population plummeted to 35 million, a drop of more than 95 per cent since the 1990s. More than a billion milkweed plants, which monarchs depend on for survival, had been lost to urbanization and weed killers throughout the butterfly’s migratory range — from overwintering sites in Mexico to their summer habitat in Canada.
We needed more milkweed in the ground, quickly. But many provinces and states listed the plant as “noxious, and few nurseries and garden centres carried local “weeds.”
A lot has changed in three years. The David Suzuki Foundation launched its #gotmilkweed campaign in April 2013 to encourage Toronto residents to plant milkweed in yards and on balconies. Foundation volunteer Homegrown Park Rangers also planted milkweed in local parks and schoolyards. The Ontario government pulled the plant from its naughty list and media stories about the monarchs’ plight took flight.
continue via link above.
Why should I plant milkweed? (source: GotMilkWeed? )
Monarch butterflies depend on milkweed to survive. It’s the only plant on which monarch mothers lay their eggs and food source for monarch caterpillars. Over the past few decades, more than one billion milkweed plants have been lost across North America, largely due to widespread use of the herbicide glyphosate (Roundup) on millions of hectares of agricultural land. Planting milkweed throughout the monarchs’ migratory range is the single most important thing we can do to help them.
Monarch population rebounds in Mexico
Posted by Amely Coulombe in Wildlife on Monday, February 29, 2016
North America’s monarch butterfly population has more than tripled in Mexico this winter, despite reaching dangerously low numbers in the past.
This season, the monarchs covered the area so densely they had to be counted by the area they covered instead of individually. An estimated 150 million insects made the trip this year, compared to only 35 million in 2013.
the rest of Amely Coulombe’s article can be found ~~ http://www.canadiangeographic.ca/blog/posting.asp?ID=1865
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The annual migration of the Monarch Butterfly from southern Canada and the Northern United States to Mexico is one of nature’s most profound and mysterious phenomena. The scientific community still hasn’t quite figured out how these tiny, fragile creatures complete such an intimidating journey and arrive at their overwintering locations, but each year millions arrive just the same.
~ ~ ~ Kindly visit the above link for the rest of the story ~ ~ ~
I posted this photo on my general ‘everything’ site and just had to add it here!! (ooops… almost Wordless Wednesday)