Wild Ones has partnered with Monarch Joint Venture to present our Wild for Monarchs Campaign. Stay tuned to this webpage as we continue to develop resources to promote native plant habitat for the Monarchs as well as other butterflies and pollinators.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) have officially declared the monarch migration to be an endangered biological phenomenon, and they recognize monarch conservation as the first priority in world butterfly conservation. Monarchs have been given "Near Threatened" status by WWF. Here is a link to the western count from Xerces Society and the Eastern count courtesy of Journey North . The count for the last several years has been below the long-term average.
The important thing to note with the Eastern count is that it does not reflect overwintering mortality. Severe storms can wipe out 70-80% of the monarchs. 2013 promises to be the worst population count ever, WWF Mexico should be releasing the official count soon. People tend to blame Canada for their noxious weed laws, and Mexico for illegal logging, but we in the United States are also responsible for the Monarch decline. They breed in OUR backyards. We all need to be good stewards of the natural world, and that starts in our own yards.
Monarch caterpillars feed exclusively on leaves of milkweed plants, therefore preserving and growing these native plants is crucial in protecting the Monarch butterfly. The Wild Ones Monarchs Committee encourages YOU to collect milkweed seeds and plant them in your own backyard and to encourage their planting in your community. Make a start now! Be a good steward of the natural world.
Although Common Milkweed Asclepias syriaca) is generally the preferred host plant of Monarchs in the Midwest because its leaves are more tender and less hairy than some other species, they will lay their eggs and feed on Swamp (A. incarnata) and Butterfly (A. tuberosa) as well. All the milkweed species are used as nectar plants. For more information about the Monarch's preferred host and nectaring plants and about establishing native plant butterfly gardens, go to Wild for Monarchs.
See this page for selecting milkweed species in your region.
|Monarch life cycle|
Partnering with Wild for Monarchs:
|Monarch Joint Venture www.monarchjointventure.org||Monarch Watch's Bring Back the Monarchs www.monarchwatch.org/bring-back-the-monarchs|
Other resources through our partnership with Monarch Joint Venture:
|U.S. Forest Service www.fs.fed.us||U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service www.fws.gov|
|Iowa Department of Natural Resources www.iowadnr.gov/Environment/LandStewardship/PrairieResourceCenter.aspx|
|Natural Resources Conservation Service www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/site/national/home|
|Monarch Butterfly Fund www.monarchbutterflyfund.org|
|Monarchs in the Classroom www.monarchlab.org/mitc|
|Monarch Watch www.monarchwatch.org|
|North American Butterfly Association www.naba.org|
|Pollinator Partnership www.pollinator.org|
|The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation www.xerces.org/|