The monarch in my photograph was just the third I’d seen this year. Elsewhere in the East and Midwest the counts have been as low.
Major causes have been abnormal rain, snow and freezing weather in the forested mountains of central Mexico where North American monarchs roost during the winter.
In recent years, rain and snow followed by freezing weather have killed millions of butterflies, abetted by legions of loggers who continue to operate illegally in monarch preserves.
It’s especially important to record the 2004 migration, which may be one of the smallest on record. We ask interested viewers to report the place, the time of day, and the direction of flight for monarchs they observe. Please call us at 570-729-7053, or e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org.