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Missouri Program to Explore Monarch Butterflies
Missouri Ag Connection - 09/17/2021

Now is when monarch butterflies are migrating through Missouri to their wintering grounds in central Mexico, which makes it an excellent time to have a program about them.

People can learn more about these beautiful butterflies, the migration they make, and the pollination benefits they provide people at the Sept. 25 Missouri Department of Conservation's (MDC) program "Monarchs Rule." This free event, which will be 10-11 a.m. at MDC's Springfield Conservation Nature Center, is for ages 10 and older. People can register at https://mdc-event-web.s3licensing.com/Event/EventDetails/179470.

The importance of having monarch butterflies around is about much more than seeing pretty butterflies in flower gardens. Studies have shown that the financial benefits provided to U.S. citizens by the pollination activities of butterflies and other insects can be measured in the billions of dollars.

Just as impressive, but much more mysterious, are the annual autumn migrations monarchs make to central Mexico. No monarch makes the trip more than once (the butterflies live about a year), yet migrating monarchs end up at the same location year after year. MDC Volunteer Naturalist Dana Tideman will discuss theories about the annual monarch migration and will also talk about this butterfly's life cycle and what plants provide good habitat for these colorful butterflies during the time they're in Missouri. Tideman will also discuss how to tag monarchs to assist with the research being done on this fascinating insect.

Though this program is free, registration is required. Program registrants should note that they now have the option to link their children's accounts to their own, which will streamline the program registration process. Once a group account is set up, parents will be able to register their children for an event without having to log-off or log-in for each person. This allows parents to register an entire family or select family members for an event at the same time.

The Springfield Conservation Nature Center is located in southeast Springfield at 4601 S. Nature Center Way. People can call for more information the Sept. 25 monarch program or about other upcoming events by calling 417-888-4237.


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