Monarch butterfly population is rebounding
There is great news that monarch butterfly population is improving. It is expected that the number of monarchs that will reach their winter grounds in central Mexico this year will be three to four times more than last year.
Mexican Environment Secretary Rafael Pacchiano was of the view, “We estimate that the butterfly population that arrives at the reserve is as much as three and could reach four times the surface area it occupied last season”.
It is quite tough to track the population of monarchs because they cluster very closely in trees. Therefore, their numbers have to be measured by the area they cover. According to Pacchiano, monarch butterflies can cover 3 to 4 hectares this year.
By 2020, it is expected that the area to be covered would be around 6 hectares by 2020. US Interior Secretary Sally Jewell has affirmed that the nation has pledged to protect the monarchs. But in order to accomplish their mission, the US needs help of Mexico and Canada.
America has been working on a project under which milkweed, a plant needed for the butterfly’s migration, will be reintroduced. Milkweed is the plant on which the monarchs lay their eggs on. Within five years, milkweed will be reintroduced on around 3 million hectares. It will be done through planting and designating pesticide-free areas.
In the last year, illegal logging has increased by more than three fold in the monarch butterflies' wintering grounds. It disrupted the steady improvements made in past many years to improve the population of monarch butterflies.
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