Monday, August 13, 2007

Monarchs are on the Move

For the last few weeks I have seen unprecedented numbers of Monarch butterflies in the Toronto area as I have been out golfing, sitting in my backyard, and driving around, or whatever.

Last weekend SillyWife and I spent the afternoon on the beach at Port Stanley on the north shore of Lake Erie, and during a couple of hours on the beach I noticed a half dozen Monarchs fly by. But what was striking was the uniformity of their direction - every one was flying due west along the shore of the lake, a pretty clear sign that they were among the early ones not breeding again here in the north, but heading on their most improbable and amazing journey back to Mexico.

We know from past years that a month from now we will see the same pattern at Port Stanley, but in much greater numbers.

This quiet miracle is one of the truly amazing and delightful aspects of life on our planet; these big beautiful butterflies carry out one of the most unlikey adventures every year. It is a joy to see it starting again.


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