Butterfly Migration Update: April 2, 2004
At Last! Migration News from Texas
The monarchs advanced across Texas noticeably during the past week. In total, 38 sightings were reported. (Of those, notice how many occurred earlier but were not reported promptly. How might these reporting delays can affect our weekly interpretations?)
It's been a very weak showing as you can see when contrasting this year’s migration to those in years past:
Field Report from Texas by Dr. Calvert
Now back home in Texas, what does Dr. Calvert make of the migration so far? "The return of the monarchs seems delayed this year. Not so much in that they are not as far north as they usually are this time of the year--they seldom are north of the Red River by March 28th--but they have not traveled very far east. And, the numbers reported are much lower than previous years. The best guess is that the low numbers are due one or both of two factors..."
Human Population and Monarch Reports: Any Correlation?
Be careful about potential pitfalls when interpreting data! Mike Quinn, entomologist with Texas Parks and Wildlife, wonders if there is a correlation between the location of sightings in Texas and Texas population centers. "You might offer the students several different maps and ask them which one shows the best correlation to current monarch reports," he suggested. Take a look--what do you think?
Only Arkansas Added to State List: What Next?
For those keeping track, only one more state was added this week. A monarch was spotted that had just crossed into Arkansas, thanks to Ms. Brisco and student at Vera Kilpatrick Elementary in Texarkana. “We spotted our first adult monarch of the season while working in our outdoor classroom at school,” she wrote. What state do you think the butterflies will reach next?
Milkweed Ready and Waiting: Spring 2004's 1st Generation
What nice milkweed plants he’s using to allure her. It’s hard to believe a monarch anywhere in the state could miss it!
Average Arrival Date in Arkansas: What's the Mean?
So, when will a monarch reach Dr. Edson? Let’s look at the “first sightings” records he has collected over the past 7 years in Monticello, Arkansas. What do they indicate?
When Will the Migration Reach You?
You can use historic records to calculate the average arrival date for your home town. Use your own records that you've collected over the years--or dig into the Journey North database and use records collected by other people in your region:
My Monarch Habitat in...Challenge Question #14
Monarch Migration Updates for Sanctuary Area Schools
This spring, as the butterflies fly over your homes, schools and cities, we're sending the news back to the students in Mexico so they can track the migration too. We send a FAX to the town of Angangueo. Our coordinator there, German Medina, distributes the news to schools in the surrounding mountains. In each classroom there's a migration map where students can track the monarch's journey all the way to Canada. Try practicing your Spanish!
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