It's that time of the year!
The monarch butterflies have begun their annual trek from Scarborough, Maine, to Michoacán, Mexico, and have just made their usual pit stop at the Jersey Shore.
Every fall, adult monarchs head south to spend the winter in a semi-dormant state, resting and conserving energy all winter long. With a lifespan of just two to six weeks, the migration is an integral part of the insects' life cycle.
The Monarch Monitoring Project in Cape May Point, New Jersey, has been gathering data every year on the butterflies' journey. Also known as MMP, the group’s overall goal is to “increase understanding of the fall migration of monarchs along the Atlantic coast.”
On Sunday, the group posted on its blog about influx of monarch activity.
“We were growing impatient in Cape May…On Sunday they finally started to arrive,” MMP reported. “We think there are more monarchs on their way to Cape May Point over the next day or two, but we can’t be sure,” the post read.
The butterflies were off to a slow start this fall, but now that they're here, it's possible adverse weather conditions may further delay their migration.