Conservation of Monarch Butterflies
For several decades, even within the monarch biosphere reserves, illegal logging decimated the forests the monarchs were relying on. With thousands, if not millions, of
In the United States and Canada, these butterflies also face habitat destruction caused by humans. The building of roadways, developments of infrastructure, and increased land used for agriculture
The Good News for Monarch Butterfly ConservationMexico has worked at preserving 63 million acres in more than 170 protected natural areas, including 66 national parks and 41 biosphere reserves. The government has banned logging in all of the overwintering sites in Mexico, though lumber is still harvested from the surrounding buffer zones, and illegal logging within the reserves continues to occur but on a much smaller scale than in the past.
Monarch populations rebound quickly when conditions are right. For example, in January 2002, a single storm killed millions of North America’s migratory monarchs. Even though nearly 70 percent of the monarchs were killed during this period, amazingly, it took only one year for the population to recover. Also, with recent coordinated international efforts to increase protections for butterfly habitat all along the migration route, their numbers have been increasing slightly for the last few years.
Header Credit: Astrid Frisch
Kingdom of the Monarchs
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