Each fall the monarch butterfly travels thousands of miles to spend the winter in the forests on 12 mountaintops in central Mexico. The monarch migration is the most spectacular two-way migration carried out by an insect.
The forests provide unique microclimatic conditions that allow monarchs to survive the winter. Forest degradation is putting this amazing migration in peril.
Click on the graph on the right to enlarge and on this link to read how the numbers were obtained.
MBF is meeting the challenge of preserving monarch butterflies and their spectacular migration through our conservation strategy that fosters healthy ecosystems and sustainable communities through Partnerships, Forest Conservation, Scientific Research and Monitoring, Education and Outreach, and Sustainable Development.
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Video by Dr. Pablo Jaramillo - more videos
In the Spotlight
On February 7, Dr. Isabel Ramírez visited the colony known as “Carditos”, in Cerro Pelón, thanks to a special permit given by Dr. Gloria Tavera, Director of the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve. It was 12:00 P.M. on a clear and sunny day with the temperature reaching close to 20º C (68º F), which allowed Isabel to witness very active monarchs, flying and laying about in bushes as well as on the flat surfaces. From her observation points, Isabel counted 25 trees with different degrees of butterfly densities. Five of them, with very high density had the tree trunk and branches completely covered. The local people have counted up to 50 trees in the same location.
Unlike visitors to other colonies during that same week, in two hours, Isabel and her colleagues and students observed only two couples mating. This year the Cerro Pelón colony, from the observations made as a visitor, was larger than the one in Sierra Chincua.
Photographs “Carditos”, Cerro Pelón, February 7, 2015