Vermont Studies Indicate Monarch Butterflies Decline to Dangerously Low Levels

Vermont Studies Indicate Monarch Butterflies Decline to Dangerously Low Levels
Vermont Studies Indicate Monarch Butterflies Decline to Dangerously Low Levels
Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department
Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department

Vermont -(Ammoland.com)- Monarch butterflies are in decline nationwide, and may be approaching dangerously low levels.

Monarchs have declined nearly 80% in the 21 years researchers have been monitoring their wintering populations, from a high of up to one billion butterflies in the 1990s to roughly 56 million today, according to a recent report from the Xerces Society.

But according to Mark Ferguson, a biologist for the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, Vermont may play an important role in the continued efforts at monarch conservation.

“Vermont’s meadows and old fields provide habitat for milkweed, which is a critical food source for monarchs,” said Ferguson.  “In contrast, increasing levels of herbicide use in large-scale agriculture in the Midwest appear to have greatly reduced the abundance of milkweed in that part of the country, which historically produced half of the monarchs in eastern North America.”

 

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Maskman

No one mentioned global warming. What they *did* mention was herbicides. Locally, milkweed is becoming quite scarce. Anyways, once they leave their wintering grounds, the swarms split up into streams… just because you have a locally-dense migration stream, you cannot draw conclusions about the overall numbers. Wintering grounds are the only place you can get an accurate count.

Jim Marshall

I think the Vermont study on the monarch butterfly may be in error. I live in deep south Texas where many monarchs pass while on their way to their wintering grounds in Mexico and have not seen an appreciable decline in the species. Many monarchs can currently be seen here on my farm, I think they have been ‘delayed’ in their trek north due to late changes in the weather patterns, we’ve had an unusually cool spring and much wet weather that has caused some weeds and plants to proliferate. If Vermont attempts to blame ‘global warming’ on the supposed… Read more »