Coincident with their release of the Thanksgiving Count data on January 23, 2020, the Xerces Society released a report entitled “Western Monarchs in Crisis” which you can read in its entirety at the following link:
The report begins with a summary of the current crisis and factors that have contributed to the historic decline in monarch numbers to less than 1% of their historic size of the population. At these levels the monarch population is at risk of extinction. Understanding the factors contributing to the decline is essential to know how we can contribute to saving the Western monarch population.
The report goes on to recommend the top 5 actions that we can take to save Western monarchs. Of particular relevance to residents of the Monterey Peninsula are action items #1 and #3:
“The five key steps to recovering the western monarch population in the short term are:
- Protect and manage California overwintering sites
- Restore breeding and migratory habitat in California
- Protect monarchs and their habitat from pesticides
- Protect, manage, and restore summer breeding and fall migration monarch habitat outside of California
- Answer key research questions about how to best aid western monarch recovery”
Friends of the Monarchs is supporting local efforts to restore monarch overwintering habitat on the Monterey Peninsula and to protect these critical sites from degradation by pesticides, herbicides, and habitat destruction. We urge you to read the complete report from the Xerces Society at the link above.