Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Monarch verses Viceroy
Our Monarchs are in trouble. More and more of the plants they need to survive are being taken away. Both my brothers have been very involved with trying to set up way stations for the Monarchs on their long journey to Mexico. I am so excited as I have seen at least 6 Monarchs mainly on my asters. I really believe they are Monarchs and not Viceroy. The Viceroys are great imitators. They look so much like the Monarchs but have an additional stripe across the bottom section of the wing. It is interesting to note that Monarchs are poisonous and so the Viceroy gets a pass since butterfly predators think they are Monarchs.
Here a couple thinks you can do to help our Monarch:
#1 Provide milkweed for the caterpillars, it is the only thing they eat.
An additional plant that is good are orange butterfly weed.
#2 Plant a variety of nectar sources, such as zinnias, lantanas, and fall blooming asters. Let's give the butterflies a buffet!!!
#3 Stop using herbicides and insecticides in your flower gardens. Become happy with maybe a not perfect garden.
#4 Take time to sit and watch and enjoy.... I love the butterflies and wildlife all around! I was so focused on the butterfly I failed to noticed the Hummingbird . Too much fun!!