• Numbers fluctuate at Pacific Grove Monarch Sanctuary

    After three outings to the Sanctuary this week, each one earlier than  the last, we were unable to conduct an official count. This morning, Sat. March 2, we arrived at 6:30 a.m., just as the sun was rising, and the monarchs were already flying around.

    Earlier this week I estimated that there were about 5,000 monarchs at the Sanctuary. The reason for the fluctuation, after talking with the Xerces Society, could be because the last count was conducted on Feb. 20, the morning after a storm. Sometimes the number of monarchs will decrease when a storm system comes into an area, and then they return once it has passed.
    Also, with the warm weather, monarchs from other Sanctuaries could be joining ours. I know a docent down at the Point Sur Lighthouse saw some monarchs flying around there this past weekend – well away from a winter home. So the monarchs are very active right now – and may only be around for another week or so.
    We will try to conduct another count this next week as the weather gets colder, and I will let you know the results of that count.
    Allison Watson
    Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History

    posted to Cedar Street Times on March 2, 2013

    Topics: Front PG News, Butterflies

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