How you can help the endangered monarch butterfly population

Monarch butterflies recently listed as endangered
Published: Sep. 20, 2022 at 6:41 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - As we approach the fall season, the monarch butterfly population will soon start migrating south to Mexico.

Monarchs come right through the Heartland as they make their trek down south.

Monarchs have recently been listed as endangered as their population has been dwindling as of late due to habitat loss.

There are ways you can help these butterflies though as they feed on milkweed.

“We’ve changed the way that we farm over the past few decades and don’t have quite as much weedy, brushy areas where they’re favorite food, milkweed tends to grow,” Missouri Department of Conservation Naturalist Alex Holmes said. “We have less opportunities for them to rear their offspring. So, planting a native garden is probably the single biggest thing that you can do.”

Milkweed is crucial for monarch butterflies as without it, they cannot complete their life cycle.

You can find plants online and with local plant businesses across the area.

“You can put those milkweed plants that they rely on in your yard, give them places to raise their caterpillars and make your garden look pretty,” Holmes said. “Milkweed is a beautiful plant.”