The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) announced last week their listing of the migratory monarch butterfly as Endangered on its ‘Red List of Threatened Species.’
This decision is consistent with the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC), which listed Monarch Butterfly as Endangered in 2016. The government of Canada is scheduled to make its listing decision in fall 2022.
The Monarch Butterfly is an iconic species, beloved to Canadians. The eastern population’s migration each fall of up to 4,000 kilometers from Canada and the US to the Mexican highlands is one of the natural world’s most inspiring phenomena.
The loss of approximately 80 per cent of the eastern population and well over 90 per cent of the western population of Monarch Butterflies is gravely concerning, and the IUCN’s Red List is a clarion call for action. Habitat loss, broad-scale use of herbicides and climate change are threats that we must address. All Canadians can contribute to the recovery of the Monarch by spreading the awareness of the need for conservation action and by creating a native plant garden.
CWF is partnering with Rights-of-Way managers and landowners to restore meadow habitat for Monarch and is developing habitat models to help prioritize restoration. We will need to help recover this species one pollinator garden at a time and one acre of restoration at a time.
Together we will get there through a million acts of restoration.