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The Long Island Blog

October 16, 2006

Long Island’s Migrating Monarchs

Filed under: Fall by Bill @ 2:06 pm

One of the nice things about living on Long Island is it’s easy to see nature in action. The coast is easily accessible and we have a larger number of parks and nature preserves, but sometimes all you have to do is step into your own backyard.

From my yard I’ve been watching the monarch butterflies make their way south for the winter. Although we’re nearing the end of their fall migration I’m still seeing plenty of hungry monarchs feeding on my flowers.

Long Island is directly under the monarch’s flight path as they head to Mexico, Texas and parts of Florida for the winter, so if you have flowers in your yard you’re bound to see the monarchs too.

a butterflya butterfly

I find them all over my Montauk daisies–sometimes half a dozen at once. My son, a commercial fisherman, has been seeing “swarms of them” fly over his boat on the Great South Bay.

It’s hard to believe, but these butterflies travel thousands of miles south every fall to roost in a warmer climate for the winter. In the spring they’ll make the trip back. Simply amazing for such delicate and simple creatures.

Nature watching is one of the great pleasures of living on Long Island and as anyone who knows me will attest, something I never grow tired of.

Why don’t you try it? Bundle up, grab a cup of your favorite hot beverage, and sit quietly in a corner of your yard for a while. I promise you’ll see things you’ve never noticed before.

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