Letter from Ana and Pato Moreno: The Monarchs Know What They Are Doing


Written: 03/30/2022

Published: 04/06/2022

What seemed like an early departure from the butterflies this season, surprises us again. Until today, there is still a small colony with around 5 trees covered with butterflies. Even though there are a few of them, the butterflies are still very attractive for people, who get to see them.

Spring came, and little by little we saw how the colony of monarchs was decreasing. The temperature increased, and now it hits the 24°C., which means that thousands of monarchs that are remaining in the place known as Las Canoas, continue to reproduce and gradually leave.

For a moment we thought that last week would be the last time we were going to see the butterflies in the colony of Cerro Pelón. But according to the arborists from Butterflies and Their People, another small colony with about 15 trees was observed near La Lagunita. These butterflies are scattered, and in the afternoon they form some clusters. It seems that just a few of them leave the colony; because the arborists have seen them together during the morning. Probably these butterflies are the ones from Piedra Herrada, and they gather with some of the ones in Cerro Pelón.

It might seem strange and worrying for some people, to see that there are still some butterflies in their colonies. But for my dad, who was a Forest ranger for over 30 years, it doesn’t seem strange. He says it was normal to see butterflies until the end of March and the beginning of April.

We have seen some posts on facebook from our friends in Texas, saying that they’ve seen some butterflies in search of Milkweed and nectar sources. While we continue to report that there are still some butterflies in this sanctuary. And People from the communities nearby to the sanctuary, are still hiking with a hope of seeing a colony in Las Canoas. Fortunately, it is still possible to see them. 

Meanwhile the rangers and arborists begin to feel the emptiness that the butterflies are leaving. And they are getting ready to make their daily patrols on the forest, to protect it. And so, next season the butterflies have a place to come back.

—Ana & Pato Moreno


Read the Spanish version of Ana and Pato Moreno’s letter»