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It is not really news that Monarch butterflies are in trouble. Their numbers have been dropping steadily for the last twenty or more years. Last week, (August 2022) the International Union for the Conservation of Nature put the Monarch on their red list of species that are endangered. This holds no legal protections or incentives to help the Monarch, but it shows that scientists are justifiably worried.
"The most common way gardeners attempt to connect with insects is by planting for butterflies. It is a noble idea... Sadly, the execution of this enterprise is so often directed by misinformation that we end up having fewer butterflies than we started with."
-Doug Tallamy, Bringing Nature Home
Sometimes when I go for a walk around the grounds I sometimes forget we are in the middle of a pandemic. While Covid-19 has turned our world upside down, the natural world is moving along as if nothing has changed – the flowers are blooming, the bees are pollinating, the fireflies are dancing; nature seems the way it have always been, rather normal. Though in nature, nothing is ever normal.
Whenever I am talking about adaptations, I always tell my audience, "Everything in nature – ...