A while ago, experts and biologists were warning us over the threat of extinction when it comes to the Monarch Butterfly communities in the US. Millions of fascinatingly beautiful creatures are on the verge of extinction due to extreme degradation of habitats and loss of food supplies.
Well, somewhere, someone has heard the news and decided to take some serious action in order to prevent the drama from happening. Monarch butterflies only feed on a special herb and require extremely special conditions for living and breeding at a constantly progressive pace.
Fiona Lennox is Madame Butterfly who raises 400 monarch butterflies. It appears that the fascinatingly beautiful creatures are picky eaters and demand a lot of attention. They only eat milkweed, which means that the caretaker must make sure she has all the necessary supplies.
She lives in in Minessota, and ever since she’s decided to offer better chances for living to the creatures, she finds herself in a constant endeavor to collect milkweed. The plant is a pretty much rare finding, often mowed down or weeded from urban landscapes without much thought. However, this sounds like and adventure for our generous lady, who needs to search through several blocks of south Minneapolis alleyways, weed laden boulevards and neighbors’ native gardens.
The never ending quest for milkweed is at the same time an egg saving mission. In the wild, monarch butterfly eggs have a less than 10% survival rate. Madame Butterfly aims to improve survival rates, so she collects their eggs only to raise them in her home afterwards and ultimately offer them the sweet taste of freedom, by releasing them when they become butterflies.
The lady is so serious in her endeavor to save the beautiful butterflies that she has taken a year off her business consultant work so she can stay at home and raise her colorful winged kids.
Raising butterflies is nevertheless a fulltime job. The lady has started with a little group of caterpillars in plastic salad containers, which have rapidly turned into a desktop spread of Petrie dishes to several screened butterfly boxes and ultimately and outdoor sanctuary made with tulle.
More than half of every day is spent caring for the tiny insects. Caterpillars get fresh milkweed to help them grow into monarch butterfly adults. Monarchs then lay their eggs on the plant and the lady collects the extremely small structures to help them grow in optimum conditions.
Image Source: worldwildlife.org