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.
“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.