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Monarch Butterfly In ‘Grave Danger’ Of Disappearing, Migration Reaches Record Low

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posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 02:40 AM
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The Monarch Butterflies migrate to Mexico from Canada and the U.S., traveling up to 2,500 miles to warmer temps in the winter time
But over the past few years, due to various reasons, their population has been dwindling


Eighteen years ago, the Monarch butterflies, which clump together in trees by the thousands, occupied more than 44 acres of forest in central Mexico during their winter migration. In 2012, the butterflies’ covered just 2.93 acres of forest. Last year, the Monarchs’ space measured less than 2 acres -- a 44 percent decrease from the same time the previous year.

“The migration is definitely proving to be an endangered biological phenomenon,” Lincoln Brower, a leading entomologist at Sweet Briar College in Virginia, told the Associated Press. “The main culprit is now GMO herbicide-resistant corn and soybean crops and herbicides in the USA, [which] leads to the wholesale killing of the monarch’s principal food plant, common milkweed.”

Monarch butterflies lay their eggs on milkweed plants. When the eggs hatch, the larvae feed off the plant. Researchers say that without milkweed, there are no butterflies.

Monarch Butterfly In ‘Grave Danger’ Of Disappearing, Migration Reaches Record Low

It seems as though the butterflies are only able to lay eggs on the milkweed and the caterpillars need the milkweed plant to live.
Once a monarch butterfly is an adult (after the metamorphosis into a full grown butterfly) it can eat the nectar from any flower, not just the milkweed plant

It’s unclear what exactly would happen if the monarchs continue to vanish, but experts agree measures must be taken to make sure that doesn't occur.

The Monarch migration is big business in parts of Mexico and California, where tourists flock to witness the butterflies’ annual journey for themselves.



This could be the most shocking news for monarch butterfly enthusiasts in North America. Monarch butterflies are at an all-time low. Now, the World Wildlife Fund-Mexico has devised a plan, hoping to increase the monarch butterfly population.

Can A Monarch Butterfly Conservation Plan Save Their Dwindling Populations?



edit on 3-2-2014 by snarky412 because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 03:08 AM
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reply to post by snarky412
 


Between this and the lack of water in CA, we're SOL



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 03:26 AM
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reply to post by StoutBroux
 



Between this and the lack of water in CA, we're SOL


Can't leave out the decline in bees and bats too
Not good....



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 06:41 AM
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reply to post by snarky412
 


G,day mate.i dont want to rain on your parade. but, the monarch butterfly made the news down here in SOUTH AUSTRALIA back in 1961 as having just arrived arrived.
it still florishes right around the coastal fringes of the continent.
So. Dont sweat it mate its still ok and if yer like i'll sell yer sum. lol



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 07:48 AM
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I've seen enough Monarch caterpillars munching away on milkweeds around here to know they have a decent population. It takes many generations for the Monarchs to reach their Mexican hibernation groves, so protecting them where ever they are found is needed.

One of the main problems I see is that the common milkweed is considered an ugly noxious weed. It grows about three feet tall, has a sticky milky sap that is toxic, and it spreads silk around when the seed pods open. Although it "grows like a weed" it prefers poor sandy soil that has been disturbed and in full sun, which makes roadsides the perfect area for it to grow. Combine this with the fact that, due to the farmer's efforts, most open fields have few milkweed colonies. So the hapless Monarch butterfly is forced to fly down the roadways to survive and is therefore subject to more road kill fatalities.

As much as you'd like to avoid hitting them while driving, you can't most of the time. I've heard of butterfly scoops for your front grill that reduces causalities, but everyone would have to get one for that to be effective. I've even had to avoid them while riding a bicycle, and have accidentally run them down! They seem to be suicidal flying around the roads.



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 07:53 AM
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Maybe I'll plant a little milkweed on my property to try to help the butterflies. I can't stop Monsanto, but I may be able to help the butterflies. Occasionally I will see a few of these butterflies but most of them are far from here. Maybe other members in their migration area can help them better.

If you plant it they will come. We do not need the government to help with this, they are bought and paid for by Monsanto anyway.



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 08:02 AM
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Monsanto is being blamed for the disappearance of the Monarch butterfly by scientists, along with illegal logging and changing temperatures.

rt.com...

I would hazard a guess at the constant movement of the cosmos funnelling down the most minor changes in everything we have ever known, will, eventually result in the demise of everything in existence.

The butterfly is unfortunately on the list with everything else.

We could protect it as much as possible although there will be greater forces usually profiting from mindlessly ignoring the beauty of the universe and everything within it



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 02:49 PM
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I have a few milkweed plants growing beside my workshop and have monarchs every year. In 2013 i only had about 4-5 caterpillars, a few dozen in 2012 and over a hundred in 2011. 100 plus is not the norm but the last two years have been terrible.



posted on Feb, 3 2014 @ 07:22 PM
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You still see a decent number out in the great plains especially through the Flint Hills where pasturage is far more common than crops. I don't know what things are like in Western Kansas.

A far bigger concern is that the small acres of wintering forest in Mexico are under threat of being chopped down. That threatens the whole species more than loss of habitat along some of their migration lanes.
edit on 3-2-2014 by ketsuko because: (no reason given)



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