Many Americans were startled to learn recently that a butterfly once found in so many people’s backyards and fields is now being petitioned for federal listing as a threatened species. It will take months if not years for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to decide whether the monarchs require this form of protection.
Rather than advocating for a particular outcome, I wish to focus on how any effective protection will need to positively engage both farmers and the rest of the food supply chain.
Go to the produce section in any Whole Foods, AJ’s, or Sprouts in the Tucson area, and at least 237 of the 453 fruits and vegetables found there were brought to you by a now-imperiled fleet of flying pollinators.
While scientists and farmers in Baja Arizona were among the first in the country to sound the alarm about pollinator declines…
In October, millions of monarch butterflies will make a long migration from Canada to Mexico, many stopping in Santa Cruz, Pacific Grove, and Big Sur along the way.
Millions of Monarch butterflies make the long journey from Canada to Mexico — many stopping in Pacific Grove ….
A line of people curves like the body of a giant caterpillar, twisting up the mountain into the endangered oyamel fir forest. Michoacán, Mexico—the cloud-misted overwintering site of the monarch butterfly.
Near the middle of the caterpillar of people, I kept pace, thinking about Catholic peregrinos who journey on well-worn footpaths and roads, sometimes hundreds of miles, to reach a precious relic…
Population numbers are up from the lowest ever recorded in 2013 After a devastating drop in population numbers over the past two years, the monarch butterfly is poised to make a comeback this summer. The increase is being noticed at Point Pelee National Park in Leamington, Ont., the final Canadian stop of the monarchs’ annual […]
Chip Taylor is the founder and director of Monarch Watch.
He talks about the recent decline of the monarch butterfly due mainly to habitat loss, pesticide use and government policies that encourage ethanol production, and how there will need to be a massive effort to plant milkweed if we hope to save this iconic species.
For longtime butterfly lover Nina Veteto, a plant called Milkweed is the answer to the disappearing Monarch butterfly and their declining 2,000-mile annual migration.
Based in North Carolina, Nina’s project Divide and Multiply aims to propagate Milkweed, which is essential for healthy Monarch habitat. They will then distribute the plants to 15 non-profit organizations and schools that have signed on to maintain butterfly habitat this year.
The Center for Biological Diversity and Center for Food Safety as co-lead petitioners joined by the Xerces Society and renowned monarch scientist Dr. Lincoln Brower filed a legal petition today to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seeking Endangered Species Act protection for monarch butterflies, which have declined by more than 90 percent in under 20 years.
During the same period it is estimated that these once-common iconic orange and black butterflies may have lost more than 165 million acres of habitat…