Monarch butterfly on swamp milkweed in Michigan. Photo by Jim Hudgins/USFWS.
The monarch butterfly is one of the most recognizable species in North America and it’s in trouble. Habitat loss and fragmentation has occurred throughout the monarch’s range. Pesticide use can destroy the milkweed monarchs need to survive. A changing climate has intensified weather events which may impact monarch populations.
Numbers of monarchs have decreased significantly over the last 20 years, but together we can save the monarch. In the United States, there is a massive effort to provide habitat for monarch butterflies, imperiled bumble bees and other pollinators. There is no one group or agency responsible for providing habitat needed for monarch conservation. All organizations, agencies and individuals must work together to improve, restore and create grassland habitats to save monarchs.
No matter who you are or where you live, you can get involved today. Start by planting milkweed and nectar plants that are native to your area. Garden organically to minimize your impacts on monarchs, their food plants and other pollinators. Become a citizen scientist and monitor monarchs in your area. Educate others about pollinators, conservation and how they can help.
Monarch butterflies overwintering near Santa Barbara, California. Photo by Lisa Hupp/USFWS.
Monarch butterflies are astonishing creatures undertaking one of the most epic migrations in the animal kingdom. Beginning around October, they fly from central and northern U.S. states and parts of Canada to Mexico and the coast of California, where they form dense clusters high up in the trees and hunker down for the winter months.
The monarch butterfly is one of the most recognizable species in North America and it’s in trouble. Climate change has intensified weather events which may impact monarch populations. Pesticide use can destroy the milkweed monarchs need to survive. Habitat loss and fragmentation has occurred throughout the monarch’s range. You can help!
Monarch butterflies and pollinators are in trouble. You can help by planting a pollinator garden! You can plant a garden anywhere - your yard, school, church, business or even in a pot for your front steps.
A simple, native flower garden will attract beautiful butterflies to your yard and help pollinators stay healthy. In addition to nectar from flowers, monarch butterflies need milkweed to survive, so if you notice the leaves on your milkweed have been chomped, don’t worry, it’s a great sign!
Monarch caterpillar on common milkweed in Minnesota.
Photo by Courtney Celley/USFWS.
We are excited to be a part of leading the charge in protecting monarch butterflies across the American landscape. Saving the monarch butterfly will not happen without working together, creating collaborative opportunities. We are engaging with more than 50 partners throughout North America to enhance our conservation efforts to provide a future filled with monarchs.
Since 1995, the Wildlife Without Borders - Mexico Program has made a continuing commitment to support the conservation of monarch butterflies throughout the migration and overwintering sites.
Learn more about partnerships through Monarch Joint Venture.