Monday, May 23, 2016


     We encourage people to help the Monarch butterfly by creating special wildlife-friendly spaces in their yards and at their places of business. By doing this you not only increase biodiversity and benefit hundreds of other species of flora and fauna, but you also provide yourself a summertime of entertainment. Got comments or ideas for us? We'd enjoy hearing from  you- Contact Us

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Tagged Adirondack Monarch Butterfly Recovered in Mexico!

Monarch tagged in the Adirondacks recovered in Mexico!
     The May 23, 2016 ISSUE of Monarch Butterfly Happenings! newsletter is out and it is choked full of nifty stories about Monarchs and creative ways to make your yard a paradise that they will enjoy and thrive in.
     I hand-pick the articles for each issue and placed  "How To Build A Butterfly and Pollinator Garden in 7 Steps" as the lead headline. In addition, check out these happenings in the newsletter:
  • A tagged Monarch from the Adirondacks was recovered in Mexico
  • Carpet the countryside...and your yard...with milkweed "bombs" and give struggling monarchs a chance. 
  • Demanding federal protection for monarchs and other species!
  • Female or male monarch? See the differences.
  • 5 spring plants that could save the monarch butterfly!
  • Milkweed project aims to restore Iowa butterfly habitat.
  • With help from farmers, the Monarch Butterfly will not go extinct.
     Subscribe to the free "Monarch Butterfly Happenings!" newsletter.

     There's much more in this issue! I hope you convert some of your yards to become wildlife-friendly places. Enjoy the May 23, 2016 Issue of Monarch Butterfly Happenings! 

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. enjoys his wildlife-friendly suburban yard and is devoted to saving the Monarch butterfly. Contact him on the Secure Contact Form.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016


Monarch Butterfly numbers used to be in the billions

     Yahoo! The April 11, 2016 Issue of Monarch Butterfly Happenings! is out. This issue has neat updates and stories about the Monarch Butterfly, including the four biggest hazards they face. Also included are hand-selected stories about how the Monarch is headed for extinction and the reason to include it on the Endangered Species List. 
     Two short decades ago, over a billion monarchs flew up into the U.S. from Mexico seeking milkweed plants to lay their eggs on. Maybe, those numbers will come back...someday. This 4/11/16 Issue of Monarch Butterfly Happenings! also has informative articles on the great snowstorm in Mexico that killed many of our black and orange friends. You'll also learn about David Suzuki's foundation which hosts #gotmilkweed and Monarch Manifesto campaigns to help bring back the monarch.
     There's much more, too! Happy reading about the Monarch Butterfly.


Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Michigan plants 400,000 Milkweeds to help Monarch Butterfly!

This December 28, 2015 issue of "Monarch Butterfly Happenings!" has some uplifting articles, including the Headline reporting of 400,000 milkweed plants being planted in Michigan! Click "Monarch Butterfly Happenings!" and have an enjoyable read!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015


My wife & I released 208 Monarch butterflies this year- here's
the last one, a male.
From deforestation in Mexico to a dwindling food supply in the U.S., Monarch butterflies face threats on both sides of the border.

Funds available to restore Monarch butterfly habitats. The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation has awarded a nearly $250,000 grant to seven Oklahoma tribes to restore important monarch habitat on tribal lands and create in-state sources for much-needed milkweed production. The award is part of a first round of 22 grants totaling $3.3 million for projects across the country deemed most important to recovery of the iconic orange-and-black butterflies. 

Kim Nelson of Raymond, Wisconsin raises and releases Monarch butterflies. She represents and is the poster child of "Monarch lovers" everywhere. Hooray for Kim! 

Millions of Monarch butterflies are now visiting Texas, ready to treat the state as an all-you-can-eat buffet, building up fat levels that sustain them all winter in the cool mountains of Mexico. Did you know Texas has more milkweed types than any other state? 

Harvesting milkweed is vital to sustaining the Monarch butterfly.  By harvesting the pods of common milkweed plants, which contain the plant’s seeds, and then planting those seeds — or even just spreading them — in areas that aren’t mowed, governments and individuals can help grow more of the plants, which are vital to the monarchs’ life cycle.                                                                                   

Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. enjoys his wildlife-friendly suburban yard and is devoted to saving the Monarch butterfly. Contact him on the Secure Contact Form.


Monarchs love my Zinnia flower patch
     I took the above photo yesterday. The migrating Monarch butterflies seem to make it a habit to zero in on a small patch of Zinnias my brother planted here in NW Pennsylvania. The flowers are still well in bloom and just yesterday (10/05/15) a large Monarch spent a full half hour visiting each flower. Its body actually pumped up and down as it savored the nectar of these late-blooming plants.
Here's a great article from Monarch Joint Venture that describes 3 ways you can help the Monarch butterfly this fall:

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Little Portage WA sloughs connect main marshes

     Yesterday (Monday, August 24) was a balmy day here in NW Ohio and some Monarchs were migrating while others were still laying eggs...go figure. I drove to Little Portage Wildlife Area just north of Fremont and collected eggs, tiny hatchlings and several very large Monarch caterpillars about to form a "J" off a single milkweed plant! The plant was in the middle of a mowed path that meanders through Little Portage, so I took them all home before the plow comes along.
Swamp milkweed abounds along the sloughs at
Little Portage WA. Female Monarchs frequent them.

     While trekking through the area, three Monarch butterflies flew by and I got some nice photos of them. The wetlands through Little Portage were full of Wood ducks and Great Blue herons. A series of narrow sloughs connect the main marshes, making the walks along them interesting, especially if you enjoy watching dragonflies. Swamp milkweed abounds along these sloughs and they are frequented by female Monarchs during the breeding season.
Large caterpillars and eggs were found on same milkweed
plants lining the sloughs at Little Portage WA
     Back home, I released a female Monarch onto a pot of Black-eyed Susan I keep on the front porch. She was the 112th Monarch I released this year, and I still have 89 chrysalises lining the tops of my plastic aquarium cages that have not yet to eclose. Did I mention the 30+ caterpillars that have yet to form chrysalises, the 10 un-hatched eggs? If they all develop properly, it is projected that 241 Monarch butterflies will be raised and released from my Monarch Waystation No. 163, up from 115 last year.
I hope to raise and release 241 Monarch butterflies
from  my suburban yard Monarch Waystation No. 163
     Out of the releases thus far, 56 were males, 50 were females and 3 are unknown sex because they flew away before I could check. I hope there is a high turnout in Mexico this fall, we shall see!


Robert Morton, M.Ed., Ed.S. enjoys his wildlife-friendly suburban yard and is devoted to saving the Monarch butterfly. Contact him on the Secure Contact Form.