Monarch butterflies

Natasha Hadden

This weekend, August 14, at Dinosaur National Monument, people can watch monarch tagging. As monarch butterflies migrate through Utah, scientists are tagging the butterflies to better track their movements and estimate their populations.

The Denver Post

The Monarch and Other Winged Wonders Festival will happen on Thursday in Nibley. We’ll preview the event next time on Access Utah. We’ll learn about Monarch butterflies, bats, bees, fireflies, night pollinators, dragonflies and birds. We’ll talk about the decline in some of these species and how we can help. And we’ll discuss how being in nature can improve our health and well-being.

Wild About Utah: Monarch Waystations

Jun 16, 2021
Credit Courtesy & Copyright 2020, Jennifer Burghardt Dowd, Photographer

In the northeast region of Utah nestled between the Wellsville Mountains and the Bear River Range, Cache Valley and the surrounding landscapes begin to show the first signs of spring. Wildflowers emerge on the hillsides, birds return to the valley floor and various native plants produce and deliver the timely first round of regional food sources to host our diverse pollinator populations. I am eager this year to see if we will get to experience the return of the beloved monarch butterfly, an iconic long-distance migrator that has made a noticeable presence in our valley for generations. Unfortunately, with numbers critically low for the third consecutive year, their return to Utah’s summer breeding grounds remains uncertain.

Becky Yeager

It was a spectacular scene that no living person has ever witnessed.  John James Audubon said the sun would literally be blocked out for hours as the river of living creatures flew by from sunrise to sunset.  Estimates place their population up to five billion. They represented 40% of all the living Class of Aves in North America and may have been the most abundant bird species in the entire world.  They reached speeds over 60 miles per hour, and when flocks came to rest in forests their collective landings could topple large trees.  They seemed invincible.

A Utah educator has morphed part of her classroom into a monarch habitat for student learning, but is not just teaching the scientific principles. The act of raising these beautiful creatures is instilling much more than just knowledge in her students, it’s sparking curiosity, and imparting a sense of stewardship.