Make a Monarch Butterfly Garden

Posted on 30. May, 2011 by in Recent News

Did you know that all of the Monarch Butterflies we see in the eastern United States migrate from a single forest in Mexico?  This migration, and the subsequent return to Mexico in the fall, is one of the most majestic feats of navigation in the animal kingdom.  Thanks to the assistance of citizen scientists, we are learning more and more about their incredible life and journey.

The Annenberg Learner organization has been sponsoring a study of the Monarch butterfly migration since 1994.  Their excellent website has information about the life cycle and migration of this beautiful butterfly, and also provides information about making butterfly gardens as well as a portal to report butterfly sightings and the location of your garden.

In short, the Monarch butterfly leaves its winter home in Mexico in the spring, and journeys to milkweed fields in Texas where it lays its eggs.  When the larvae hatch, they feed on the milkweed as they grow into caterpillars and ultimately spin their cocoons.  When they emerge as butterflies, the Monarchs head north, feasting on specific types of flowers along the way.

Please visit the Annenberg Learner website to learn how to make a butterfly garden. Whether you get a visit from a Monarch or another type of butterfly, you’ll help support these magnificent insects, and have a lovely garden to boot!

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