Thursday, July 21, 2022
Monarch butterfly species on endangered list
From Charly Harper Facebook page
We just heard the devastating news that monarch butterflies have been officially placed on the endangered species list because of their fast-dwindling numbers. It's hard to believe (and digest) all of the human-driven destruction of this lovely planet that has occurred in my relatively short lifetime alone. Charley too felt the ache in his heart and wrote, spoke, and painted about this devastation throughout his lifetime.
If you feel called to join the fight to save these beauties, here are some things you can do:
*Remove non-native plants from your land - and plant natives! Check out https://www.xerces.org/pollinator-resource-center for pollinator conservation resource, (or google your location + native plants for local orgs and sources)!
*PLANT MILKWEED native to your region (and cut back when called for based on location). Use The Xerces Society Milkweed Finder (https://www.xerces.org/milkweed/milkweed-seed-finder). It's not too late to plant!
*Plant nectar plants (asters, goldenrods, etc) for their fall trip home
*STOP using insecticides and pesticides
*Look out for Black Swallow-Wort. It's an invasive plant with flowers that are very attractive to monarch butterflies, who lay their eggs on it, but it's toxic & kills the eggs. If you want to help monarch butterflies, kill all the black swallow-wort you see. https://www.somervillema.gov/sites/default/files/identifying-and-removing-black-swallow-wort.pdf
*Use the app iNaturalist! It's a community-based scientific tool that allows people to study insect populations, such as the Monarch, by using the data collected by community members using the app. You can submit observations of plants, animals and insects. Having this date is invaluable in determining where conservation projects can be most beneficial and where Monarchs are (and are not).
*Support legislation and leaders that put conservation and protection over profit
(Pictured here is Charley's "Blue Skies and Butterflies". So bittersweet today)