I was taking pictures of wildflowers along Atsion Lake in the NJ pine barrens. I was not looking for monarchs. Of course, I was THRILLED to see one (some, as I would discover later). I immediately took its picture. Then I notice on the right lower wing that the monarch had been tagged!! I immediately thought, "how cool was that! This monarch has been (literally) in contact with humans before!" I then started to wonder where the butterfly had been before and where it would be heading next. I didn't even think that my camera would capture enough pertinent information from the tag to be of any use to anyone. Before I had a chance to get closer, the butterfly made its way north into the forest. I was so honored to have been a witness to it. Then, I found a dozen more (unmarked) in the joe pye weed further down the lake. I observed them for about half an hour. No matter how many times they would try to fly away and cruise the asters, they kept coming back to the faded joe pye weed. It was awesome to watch.
Monarch on joe pye weed
Latitude: 39.7 Longitude: -74.7
Observed by: John
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