Recent Articles

Pennsylvania 5, Iowa 4: Caterpillar Report

August 31, 2015By
Pennsylvania 5, Iowa 4: Caterpillar Report

Happy Valley is not as happy as it used to be. But maybe the news I report here will help Penn State people perk up a bit (well, o.k., a tiny bit).

My younger sister (I throw her that sop to make up for needling her on every birthday about becoming an old geezer) proudly reported that the milkweeds she planted in her backyard had not only attracted a few Monarchs, they were now harboring four Monarch larvae (caterpillars).

Read More

The Corn Belt tightens the belt on Monarchs

August 31, 2015By
The Corn Belt tightens the belt on Monarchs

One of my most vivid childhood memories from Iowa’s corn country is watching clouds of monarch butterflies dance around the milkweed patch by our back steps and finding caterpillars on the leaves.

My brother and I raised them, as many kids do.

Read More

Farmer involvement critical to preserving Monarch butterflies

August 31, 2015By
Farmer involvement critical to preserving Monarch butterflies

Monarch butterflies are known for their beauty and considered a national treasure. Although Monarch populations have been declining, farmers can help to play an important role in writing the plan not only to preserve them, but to increase their population.

The Monarch butterfly is the only known butterfly species to make a two-way migration, much as birds do. Each spring, they journey from wintering grounds in Mexico to the northern U.S. and Canada.

Read More

Monarch Butterflies Fate Could Be Predicted By Milkweed Grown In CO2 Chambers

August 31, 2015By
Monarch Butterflies Fate Could Be Predicted By Milkweed Grown In CO2 Chambers

Scientists at the University of Michigan are working on a long-term project to help predict how monarchs will respond to climate change, and what we can do to save them.

Milkweed grown in carbon dioxide-filled chambers could help scientists predict the fate of monarch butterflies. The monarch butterfly population is already on the decline, and milkweed is their primary food source.

Read More

As pesticides wipe out Monarch butterflies in the U.S., illegal logging is doing the same in Mexico

August 31, 2015By
As pesticides wipe out Monarch butterflies in the U.S., illegal logging is doing the same in Mexico

The news was already bad. Really, really bad.

Monarch butterflies that alight from Mexico and fly across the United States to Canada are being massacred. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service laid out a grim statistic in February: Nearly a billion have vanished since 1990…

Read More

GMOs, Herbicides, and Public Health

August 31, 2015By
GMOs, Herbicides, and Public Health

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are not high on most physicians’ worry lists. If we think at all about biotechnology, most of us probably focus on direct threats to human health, such as prospects for converting pathogens to biologic weapons or the implications of new technologies for editing the human germline.

But while those debates simmer, the application of biotechnology to agriculture has been rapid and aggressive.

Read More

Seven steps to help bring butterflies home

August 31, 2015By
Seven steps to help bring butterflies home

Want to help monarch butterflies? Encourage a local school, faith group, business or institution with gardens or green space to add more milkweed and butterfly-friendly plants.

Here are the seven steps to planting the seeds for growing a butterfly garden in your community…

Read More

Saving the Migration – A Newsy Documentary

August 21, 2015By
Saving the Migration – A Newsy Documentary

This is a wonderful 14 minute video with Chip Taylor, Carol Davit and others on monarchs’ future. We recommend this Newsy Documentary.

Read More