Should the monarch butterfly be added to the endangered list?

After watching the population plummet 90 percent over the past 20 years, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it will consider adding the Monarch to the endangered species list. The agency will take a year to determine if the monarchs are endangered.

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Twenty years ago, the Monarchs covered about 50 acres at their winter grounds in Mexico. Last year they occupied less than two.

Today’s Question: Should the monarch butterfly be added to the endangered list?

  • Jim G

    The scientists should have the most important vote on the monarch’s status. However, I’d tell your kids about the birds and the bees…the reproductive cycle of plants… and how the monarch butterfly and other pollinators pollinate our mono-crop fields that our modern agricultural industry is so dependent upon.

  • Gordon near Two Harbors

    Two summers ago I didn’t see a single Monarch. Last summer I saw a few Monarch caterpillars on milkweeds, but think they were picked off by birds before they could morph into butterflies. In the wake of the long, intense drought across the southern plains, the deforestation of critical wintering habitat in Mexico, and landscape-scale application of chemical pesticides on genetically-modified row crops, it is not surprising that the once-ubiquitous Monarch is disappearing.

    It very well may be time to list the Monarch as an endangered species, but Monarchs are only one of countless “canaries in the coal mine”, screaming as ecosystems are collapsing world-wide as the human population balloons out of control.

  • Toxic Hubris

    Doesn’t matter. Technocrats have unleashed genetic modifications that insert toxic pesticides into the very food we eat, and the very plants the insects visit. There is no turning this back before the garden was despoiled. We deserve to reap the certain results of this hubris.

    But of course, the butterfly is nearly extinct. Why wasn’t it put on the list years ago?