Monarch Butterfly Migration Collapse Worsens

Now Would Be A Good Time To Show Your Kid’s A Monarch Butterfly
Monarch Butterfly In Steep DeclineIf you can find one

Barbara Kingsolver’s 2010 Flight Behavior ended on a positive note, but that is not likely to be the note the Monarch Butterfly species ends on.

In later 2103, the expected monarch butterfly migration failed to appear in it’s winter home in Mexico on the Day of the Dead. When they did eventually begin to return, it was in small groups and eventually totaled another record low number. The low of 60 million counted in 2012 dropped precipitously to three million in 2013.

The causes of the collapse are the usual causes. A change in farming practices to accommodate the needs of monoculture agriculture has removed millions of acres of milkweed from lands in the butterflies migration path. Loss of habitat to development runs a close second. As is the case with rapidly disappearing bee species, pesticides and herbicides are wrecking the general well being of the monarchs.

There will be a general outcry soon about the loss of the monarch butterfly because they are a designer species. There will be grass roots efforts to preserve the species which will be a lot of fun and have corporations jumping on board for the PR benefits. Monarch butterfly fashions are about to be all the rage. These efforts may or may not postpone the extinction of the Monarch.

But for every species whose extinction you notice, you can confidently multiply by thousands you don’t notice, the worker species that keep things in balance. The real fun comes when mankind attempts to restore balance.

For a global perspective on the sixth great extinction (and by great we mean “big”, not great) visit our Extinction Map.

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