We at Earth Harmony have been concerned about the Monarch Butterflies, and their species decline in numbers due to the shrinking in size of area of milkweed plants that they feed and nest (lay eggs) upon. Chemical pesticides and herbicides that many farms use on their food crops is spilling over to the edges of the fields where the Milkweed plants live and sustain Monarch Populations. The chemicals get onto the Milkweeds and harm the eggs, the caterpillars and the butterflies and thus the decline, up to 21 percent of Milkweed in the last decade.
At the same time, there has be a loss through logging of a forest in Mexico where the Butterflies migrate to in Mexico. All of this has made it a challenge.
Says Chip Taylor of Monarch Watch, and the Guelph scientists back him up: “If we want monarchs, we need to plant more milkweed, perhaps in gardens and along roadsides. But to stop the decline, the scientists say we also need to preserve undeveloped lands in the corn belt, like parks and prairies, where milkweed can feed caterpillars that grow into beautiful butterflies.”
Some organizations are shipping out milkweed plants, such as MonarchWatch.org
They have sent out 30,000 plants. We have built two ‘Butterfly Gardens” in the shape of Butterflies where we have planted Milkweed.
What is needed is a greater call for only organic foods. A larger market for organics can come from our own US Schools. If we take the step to require an increase of organics, perhaps starting with using at least 40% organics in all US Schools, a tremendous amount of crops and milkweeds will be spared insecticides and the numbers will increase…
This will also boost the Bee populations whose numbers have been declining for the same reasons.
Is this feasible? Can we call on PTA to speak up about increasing the quality of food their kids eat at school, and help bees and butterflies as well. Perhaps we can let the children all paint monarchs and bees in their schools, so they know that they are helping their little friends by eating healthier.