The monarch population has declined with extreme weather and a lack of the milkweed that the butterflies feed on, experts say.
|Scooped by Rachel Blundon|
Monarch butterflies have steadily decreased in the number of butterflies who are migrating back to Mexico for the winter. The geographical area that is occupied by these butterflies, once at 50 square acres, has fallen to less than 3 square acres. This decline has occurred over the last 8 years. The latest decrease in butterfly numbers was due to high heat and drought in North America, which contributed to early hatching, low and dry food supply and drying out of some of the eggs laid. The Midwest is the largest feeding grounds for the Monarchs and because of the increase in herbicides on agricultural products, the herbicide is also killing off the milkweed plant that the Monarchs feed on. An expansion of farmland in the US has also cut down on the Monarchs feeding grounds. An issue resulting in the decling of the butterfly is a chain reaction up the food chain. "Fewer butterflies probably means there are fewer other insects that are food for birds, and fewer birds for larger predators."
I would defintely recommend this article, it was very easy to read and understand for someone who didn't know much about the topic. It also gave clear explainations to the cause of the decline and the solutions that Mexico is taking to fix this condition.