Monarch Migration News: October 2, 2014
By Elizabeth Howard
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After nearly two weeks of south winds, the leading edge of the migration hasn't moved south of Kansas. To the delight of people watching, monarchs continue to come down from the north and are stacking up as they wait for a north wind.

Monarch Butterfly
"Hundreds and hundreds of beautiful monarchs migrating through our backyard nestled in our pine trees." Samantha Ricke    Wright, Kansas    September 25, 2014


News: Riding Appalachian Ridges
In the east, peak flights were witnessed along the ridges of the Appalachian Mountains. Air rises when it hits these ridges and the monarchs get a free ride.

"Small groupings and single monarchs were passing overhead at treetop level and higher. We counted for 15 minutes and reached 95. The flow was steady for about an hour then tapered off as the temperature lowered. We drove up last weekend and saw none, but today it was amazing." Asheville, NC    September 28, 2014

A Second Wave
In the Midwest, monarchs are continuing to make their way across the prairie. After a lull, a second wave of peak migration was reported by several observers in Iowa.

A Surprise
From his prairie habitat in central Iowa, John Clayton sent pictures of monarchs roosting on sunflowers. Since roosts are typically found on trees, why didn't these monarchs seek similar shelter?

To Gregg Lee, who has observed similar behavior in Texas, this is not unexpected

"Whether monarchs roost at all depends on temperature and lipid levels. Apparently they usually do, but hungry monarchs in warm temps may stay on food plants overnight, or move to roosts only after sunset."

Compare Years
These comparative maps show the migration is a bit late this fall, but monarch numbers are definitely higher. North winds are predicted for Friday so get ready to see the butterflies fly!

Ridges of the Appalachian Mountains
Appalachian Ridges
Monarch Butterfly
Monarch Butterfly
Compare Years
Maps: Report Your Sightings

What to Report to Track Fall Migration

Monarch Butterfly: Adult Sighted Monarch Butterfly: Egg or Larva Sighted
What to Report Adult Butterflies
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Eggs and Larvae
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Monarch Butterfly Migration Map: Fall Roosts, Fall 2014 Monarch Butterfly Migration Map: Peak Migration Fall 2014 How You Can Help
Fall Roosts
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Peak Migration
map | list
Next Update October 9, 2014