Monarch Butterflies: “Butterflies without Borders”

By Bob Graham

The Sociedad de Audubon México, A.C., presents the popular slide show, “Monarchs, Butterflies Without Borders” at the Teatro Santa Ana, La Biblioteca. Presented by Bob Graham, retired naturalist from “Parks Canada”, this slide show details the life cycle of the Monarch Butterfly and its fantastic migration from the Milkweed fields of Northern United States and Canada to Mexico. At the same time, Bob will emphasize some of the problems threatening the very survival of this “Endangered Phenomenon.”

Lecture: Monarch Butterflies: “Butterflies without Borders” By Audubon Society A.C. Mon, Jan 9, 3pm. Teatro Santa Ana, La Biblioteca, Reloj 50A. Donations 60 pesos

Scientists believe that Monarch Butterflies (Danaus plexippus) belong to a family whose evolutionary origins are tropical. None of this family is able to tolerate freezing at any stage of their life cycle. Nevertheless, over tens of thousands of years, Monarchs have extended their breeding territory north into the milkweed fields of the United States and Canada.

Each fall, like many Canadians and Americans, Monarchs abandon their northern homes and head south. What triggers this exodus among Monarchs is uncertain, but decreasing hours of daylight and cooler temperatures probably play a major role.

Their final destination is high in the mountains that make up the Sierra de Angangueo, in the State of Michoacán, only a half-day’s drive south of San Miguel de Allende. For some Monarchs, their journey spans much of North America.

Given the size of this dainty creature, this is one of the most perilous and spectacular migrations in the world. This trek and the beautiful, jade-colored, bejeweled chrysalis have made Monarch Butterflies one of the most popular of North American insects, to the degree, that there is a move afoot to make them the National Insect of the United States.

Tickets can be purchased the afternoon of the presentation. This lecture is free to local Audubon members. The proceeds will go to the Sociedad Audubon de México, A.C. For additional information, please call Bob Graham at 154-9856.

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