Exit the butterfly

First bees. Now butterflies.

A Minot State University professor says butterflies are declining.

“Everybody I’ve talked to says the numbers are down dramatically,” Ron Royer told the Associated Press, an observation confirmed in the News Cut Perennial Garden.

About six butterfly species found in North Dakota have been considered candidates for the endangered species list.

The Dakota Skipper, for one, may be on its way out. The Powesheik Skipperling probably is already gone for good, despite a few sightings.

Poweshiek_Skipperling_giant.jpg

It was too cold this year, Royer says. Nature’s cycles are out of whack and the dirty little secret of nature is that everything has to go just right for species to survive. The cold weather delayed plants that butterflies depend on. Bugs on land and water showed up too late this year, so there’s a shortage of toads, frogs and salamanders, too.

  • Jim!!!

    There doesn’t seem to be any shortage of grasshoppers this year.