Monarch butterflies are one of the few spectacular treats nature made for the eye. Their rich colors create an impressive contrast that gained them world notoriety. However, they might be in danger. Scientists started to record smaller and smaller members joining their migration ritual along the west coast of the U.S. This might be a sign that this species will go extinct.
In Today’s U.S. There Are Only 300,000 Monarch Butterflies Left
Reports started showing hints of a fading process of the monarch population since the 1980s. However, a recent study offered the latest update on their situation. Researchers at the Washington State University gathered data on numbers of butterflies along the coast of California. Their input led to the creation of an estimated number of western monarch butterflies.
However, the findings didn’t bring good news. On the contrary, there are only 5% butterflies left of what they used to be around 35 years ago. Whereas in the 1980s the migration showed a number of 10 million monarchs, nowadays their population shrank to 300,000 specimens.
There were many documentaries in the mid 20th century that focused on the mesmerizing routine of the western monarch. They are usually gathering together for the annual autumn migration to travel all across the continent.
North America Might Lose This Magnificent Species in 35 Years
Wherever they go, they perform quite a visual show. They used to cover entire trees and parts of the woods with their magnificent wings, and the result was a black-and-orange canvas.
On the other hand, eastern species which also faces concerning declines is migrating across the border and into Mexico for their final destination. These bugs are capable of covering thousands of miles to take part in this procedure.
Based on the official counts that date back to the 1997 and the ones volunteers registered, the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conversation compiled a log on this species. According to these numbers, if monarchs continue down this road, the North America will lose sight of them completely in another 35 years.
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