Did you know that monarch butterflies can travel upwards of 2,500 miles while migrating from the United States to Mexico, where they hibernate for the winter? Tracking allows us to follow their migration patterns. Earlier this fall, Heritage Conservancy staff and volunteers joined forces at our Jackson Pond Preserve for a tagging event at the property’s 4-acre pollinator meadow to allow for just that.
The monarchs were gently caught and carefully tagged on their wings with a small sticker that displays a unique number, which was recorded and uploaded to a database. We are excited to follow the monarchs’ journeys! As tagged monarchs are spotted along their migration path, individuals are encouraged to report their number to the database and chart their route.
If you’d like to help monarchs along their way, consider planting milkweed. Fall is an ideal time to plant milkweed, and monarch butterflies lay their eggs exclusively on it. The plants should be in bloom just in time for the butterflies to return to breed after their winter in the South!