Narrowing Focus

The monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus)¬†population on the Mexican Monarch Reserve where they overwinter is the lowest since annual surveys began back in 1993. The oyamel fir forests provide a warm winter home for the monarchs, known for their great migration across North America. The population is down 59% from two years ago. In 1996, monarchs…

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Pollinarium Paddles

These images are of pollinaria, the strange and wonderful fertilization¬†saddlebags of the milkweed, among other flowering plants. A pollinating insect, a monarch butterfly for example, stands atop the milkweed flowerhead. Usually there would be a layer of pollen dust waiting to catch a ride, but in this case, a wee pollinarium detaches from the flower…

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Moment of Monarchs

When I was a child, we lived for a time in the U.S. Midwest. One autumn, I had the great good fortune of experiencing the migration of the monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus). I didn’t even have to go on a field trip – the migrating flock flew right through our schoolyard in suburban Milwaukee, Wisconsin.…

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