Recent research has shown that not only humans, animals, and fish are affected by storms and drought but also insects, such as the monarch butterfly.
As everyone concentrates on the economy and wellness of their lives, other hardly noticeable issues need our attention. Experts explain that when a landscape changes, it affects all the living creatures that are forced to adapt to these changes so they can survive.
But some of them are more vulnerable and have a difficult adjustment to such an unstable environment. The population of the monarch butterfly has dropped off with 95 percent in only 20 years, a situation that puts the survival of their species under the question mark.
It means that in the future, this species might rarely be seen even in the famous Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve in Mexico. The monarch’s problem points out the need for preserving and protecting the environment.
The monarch butterflies’ population from the East started their annual migration north from Mexico in March, towards Texas and Oklahoma. Fortunately, this migration is carefully observed and supported by many biologists.
What is interesting is that every generation of monarchs follows the same path every year. Their destination is set towards places that have higher temperatures. However, their south journey from Canada was affected because of unstable weather as the biological trigger of the butterflies did not work during the last few years, leading to a migration delay of six weeks.
Worse, when the weather finally became cold enough to influence the migration, it turned out to be too cold in the Midwest causing the death of many monarchs during the trip south. Furthermore, every unusual weather event, such as intense storms or drought led to massive losses and a harmful migration effect on monarchs.
For instance, around 80 percent of the overwintering monarch population died during a sudden storm in Mexico, in 2002. In addition to this, drier and hotter weather conditions caused a massive amount of deaths among the monarchs which were still in the larval stage.
Nevertheless, scientists concluded that the restoration of the habitat would be the key to stopping the decline of the monarch population. Citizens and landowners have been encouraged and financially supported to plant milkweed in community spaces, gardens, and backyards in order to create the ideal monarch habitat and to influence the migration path from Mexico to the U.S.- Canadian Border.