Life History

Monarch Facts

  • Western monarch populations have declined by 99.4% since the 1980's
      • The western monarch numbers dropped from 192,688 to 28,429 in just one year. That's an 86% drop.
  • Eastern monarch populations have declined by more than 80%
  • Monarch caterpillars can only eat milkweed
  • Monarchs have a true, long-distance migration
  • The western population of monarchs mostly overwinter on the coast of California, but we know that some travel to the overwintering sites in Mexico
  • A single monarch can fly over 2,000 miles!
  • In the spring and summer, monarchs only live for a few weeks. These monarchs begin to travel away from the overwintering sites and extend all the way to southern Canada by the end of summer
  • The 4th generation, or super-generation, is born in the fall and it is these monarchs that will make the migration back to the overwintering sites