Facebook icon Twitter icon Flicker icon You Tube icon

Open Spaces

A Talk on the Wild Side.

Monarch Conservation’s All about Connections

Monarch butterflyPhoto by Scott Pruitt/USFWS

When we decided to go “all in” on monarch conservation, we knew we’d need the help of every U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service program. We have employees with expertise on the complexities of wildlife migration, we have employees skilled at partnering with other federal and state agencies and private landowners, we have employees who educate the American people, we have employees applying the best scientific research and tools available to broaden our conservation reach, and they’re all involved in monarch conservation.

Working cooperatively across programs and offices, we took action to restore and enhance more than 330,000 acres in 2016 for monarchs and other pollinators. That exceeds the goal the Department of Interior set for us of restoring or enhancing 320,000 acres of habitat by end of fiscal year 2017. This accomplishment is the result of several factors, including: 1) our leadership identifying monarch conservation as a Service National Priority both internally to all employees and to external conservation partners, 2) our commitment of $4 million in funding for monarch conservation in 2016, and 3) opportunities to enhance a large number of acres on national wildlife refuges.

Monarch ButterflyPhoto by Tina Shaw/USFWS

“I am proud of our on-the-ground conservation actions for monarchs and other pollinators. It is catalyzing massive conservation effort across North America,” says U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe.

This was also the first year of full implementation of the Service’s Monarch Butterfly Conservation Initiative, another wing spreading our monarch conservation actions across the nation. We will continue efforts to restore and enhance habitat for monarchs and other pollinators over the next four years through 2020.

It takes every connection to provide a future filled with monarchs. We will use every bit of knowledge we have, but monarch conservation requires a national effort. Everyone -- from from schoolchildren to CEOs -- must be involved.

“We can accomplish great things for the monarch and other pollinators by continuing to work collectively and across the landscape,” says Director Ashe.

Learn more about our conservation actions and how you can help at Save the Monarch Butterfly


Thank you, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, for such an important achievement! Would that all U.S. Government agencies could accomplish so much with a few million dollars. Let's hope the American people get behind this Save the Monarch and Pollinators effort as we did with the good old Pitch In program to stop littering. Here's a big cheer to continued success!
# Posted By Paula G. | 12/16/16 5:51 PM

The help of many makes the work light. Great job gaining cooperation between agencies Mr Ashe.
# Posted By Brad G. | 12/27/16 12:18 AM

Article neglects to mention that these milkweed planting efforts are far too small in scale to cause the milkweed plant stem and corresponding monarch butterfly populations to increase in any state or region of the USA.
# Posted By Paul Cherubini | 12/29/16 1:05 AM

The enhanced and restored acres vary from "garden" size plots to hundreds of acres on National Wildlife Refuges. They are creating habitat corridors for migrating butterflies as well as breeding. Every milkweed stem planted can help monarchs.
# Posted By Fish and Wildlife Service | 1/3/17 12:35 PM

There is no annual monitoring of the number of milkweed stems that exist in any State or Region of the USA and there never will be because it's logistically impossible to annually find, map and count even 10% of them (they number in the billions). Therefore the F&WS will never be able to claim the number of stems in any State or Region has been increased due to planting efforts. Therefore the F&WS will never be able to claim the new plantings have boosted either the milkweed stem or monarch butterfly populations in any State or Region.
# Posted By Paul Cherubini | 1/3/17 1:01 PM
Untitled Document