Monarch Butterfly News: September 26, 2013
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Monarch migration is stop and go. The places monarchs rest and refuel are important for the success of the migration.

Image of the Week
Monarch Butterfly
Stopover Sites
Janet Allen
News: Stop and Go
North Wind Continues
Migration picked up noticeably during the past week, as north winds carried monarchs southward. One busy stopover site was Dr. Lincoln Brower's garden in Virginia, where a wave of monarchs arrived on September 18th:

"Today was the first migratory pulse here. The monarchs are coming in to nectar on our Zinnias and especially the Verbena. I saw and/or collected 25 monarchs in 50 minutes in the garden. I scanned the sky with binoculars but never saw them flying in. They just suddenly appear on the flowers!"

Dr. Brower checked the fat status of each butterfly, and examined the females to see whether they had mated.

"There is no question that these are migrants and not locally bred.  All are in mint condition and none of the females is mated—they're typical fall migrants."

More Migration Highlights

Missouri: "Monarchs are flying nonstop over Gladstone. Winds are NNW at 9 mph and I counted 265 monarchs in 2 hours. Flying extremely fast in a southerly direction—about 90% high flyers, some are treetop height." September 20

Oklahoma: "We noticed a cloud of butterflies coming in from the north. As they flew in we realized they were monarchs. The temperature had suddenly dropped significantly and there were some scattered thunderstorms. The butterflies roosted in one of our tall pine trees, seemingly hunkering down until the storms passed. This all occurred at dusk. We observed until dark. When we woke in the morning they were gone." September 19

Monarch Butterfly
Stopping to Eat
Charlene Ryan
Monarch Butterflies nectaring in Iowa prairie
Stopping to Rest
Sheela Rogers
Monarch Roost Count
Numbers Still Low

Dr. Linda Fink
Monarch Population: Why the Decline?
Monarch numbers are down and people are wondering why. Examine the factors that caused the decline during the past year, and the downward trend over the past decade. Explore how you can help. Monarch Butterfly Population Graph
Tracking the Migration: Map and Journal
What to Report to Track Fall Migration Monarch Butterfly Migration Map: Peak Migration, Fall 2012 Worksheet: Journal Page
What to Report
Next Update October 3, 2013