March Is Here

March 1, 2023 by Nancy Sheehan, Program Coordinator

While the western monarch population is kept in place by turbulent weather, the eastern monarch population is on the move.

Canopy Activity. Photo: Estela Romero in El Rosario Sanctuary, Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve (02/27/203)

Eastern Monarch Population

Letter From Estela Romero: Monarchs Prepare For Imminent Departure

As Estela Romero writes: "We watched all winter while monarchs oddly settled at the same spot since they arrived this past fall. Only now are they moving. Their departure appears to be imminent. This past week, we witnessed their first main movement. Visitors are lucky to watch this unusual monarch activity."

Read the Spanish version of Estela Romero’s letter»

Read the English version of Estela Romero’s letter»

First Spring Message From Correo Real/Profauna A.C.

As the Correo Real team writes in their first spring 2023 Bulletin: "...the season of return to the north of our beloved Monarchs is approaching, some are already moving and are reporting them from the municipality of Acámbaro since the 20th, a week in advance of last year. The surprise was the number of Monarchs who were seen in the foothills of the Sierra de los Agustinos arriving to perch in the area where they usually sleep in the autumn near the community of Tres Marías, on Friday 24 in the afternoon, our comrade Gilberto Ruiz Parra warned of hundreds of scattered monarchs perching in pirules [Schinus molle], mesquites and white capulín [Prunus salicifolia]. On Saturday night we talked with Eligio García Serrano and he told us that that afternoon he was in Sierra Chincua and that the spectacle of butterflies flying was impressive and that the monarchs were walking like "crazy" already preparing to leave for the north." -- Rocío, Jero, Ale, Roberto, Isabel, Cecy, Lina (Bulletin #1, Spring 2023). 

Texas Are You Ready For Spring?

Observers in Texas will need to be on alert. During this early period of migration, it can be difficult to distinguish between a migrating monarch and an overwintering monarch. Some migrating monarchs have faded and tattered wings, while others do not. Be patient and keep watching the Journey North maps to stay up-to-date on all monarch activity. And don't forget to report your observations (with photos) whenever possible. 

Western Monarch Population

Letter From Gail Morris: Western Monarch Spring 2023 Report #3

Gail Morris writes: "Storms battered the California coast this past week and temperatures plunged. Monarchs are actively breeding on sunny days and many are still basking in the safety of groves along the California coast rather than leaving the region..." 

Read Gail Morris' letter>>

Where Are Monarchs Now West of the Rockies? 

If you are observing monarchs and milkweed, please report to Journey North. 


Thank you for participating.