The Monarch butterflies have arrived but in fewer numbers than last year, so far. The great monarch migration from their overwintering habitat in Mexico began about 5 months ago. The monarchs we are starting to see here are the third generation from those that left Mexico, aka the great grandchildren. You can track their migration through maps.journeynorth.org.
Locally, last year we had the best year in a long time for sightings of monarchs. ECF established several butterfly gardens that we monitored during the summer and fall. Every milkweed plant had eggs and resulting caterpillars. Planting milkweed does make a difference. As of late July we have not seen any eggs or caterpillars in our gardens. Again in the spring, ECF distributed free milkweed plants to help expand the monarch’s reproductive habitat.