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LATEST NEWS view all
International Monarch Monitoring Blitz 2020
From July 24 to August 2, 2020, volunteers in Canada, Mexico and the United States helped monarch experts gain more information to enable better understanding of the distribution of the migratory monarch butterfly, an emblematic North American species. This year 520 volunteers across 68 states and provinces participated in the Blitz. They recorded 9,649 monarchs at various stages of their life cycle, from eggs to full-fledged butterflies. And together, they monitored 40,321 milkweed plants, the sole food source for monarch caterpillars.
Climate Change Could Cause Decline of some Alpine Butterfly Species
The long-term effects of climate change suggests that the butterfly effect is at work on butterflies in the alpine regions of North America, according to a new study by University of Alberta scientists—and the predictions don’t bode well. The researchers used climate change models to understand the effects of changing ecosystems on alpine butterflies in North America. The results show that alpine butterflies who have specialized diets, meaning that they feed on one or a few plants, are more vulnerable to climate change because of fluctuations in their food. On the other hand, butterflies that have diverse diets are less likely to be affected.
The Quest for My Biggest Butterfly Holy Grail – Jamaican Giant Swallowtail
‘Holy Grail’ butterflies are those rare, remote, hard-to-find, attractive species that linger in the imagination. For Peter Hall, the holiest of grails for many years, beginning in his childhood, was the Jamaican Giant Swallowtail (Papilio homerus). It was more like a myth than an actual species – seen by few and living in only two isolated and diminishing locations in the remoter rainforest of the Caribbean island, Jamaica.