September 21, Bring Back the Monarchs
Sunday, September 21, 2014.
Noted naturalist and educator Ina Warren will present this lively multimedia program with assistance from Master Gardener Joyce Pearsall. They are both official Monarch Watch Conservation Specialists with the Monarch Watch program at the University of Kansas. See www.monarchwatch.com for more information.
The program will cover biology basics of the monarch’s life cycle and annual migration, threats these butterflies face in central Mexico in the winter as well as their summer breeding habitat in the United States, and the importance of their sole larval food source, the milkweeds. Discussions will include the technique of tagging monarchs, sharing ideas for raising monarchs in the classroom and at home, and ways to grow native milkweeds and other native nectar-rich plant species for establishing Monarch Waystations vital to monarch survival. Free samples of native milkweed seeds will be provided. There will be a tour of the Cradle’s Monarch Waystation after the presentation.
Warren created a group of Master Gardener educators called Monarch Mentors that visited area schools assisting teachers with raising monarchs in their classrooms and planting school butterfly gardens. She has traveled to Mexico four times to study the monarchs in the overwintering reserves. Warren is a frequent presenter at the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching at Western Carolina University, and has taught natural history courses at Brevard College, Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont, and the North Carolina Arboretum.
Pearsall was a devoted Monarch Mentor and active volunteer in Transylvania County, including for the USDA Forest Service at the Cradle of Forestry. Recently, she has volunteered her time to revive the gardens at the Pisgah Ranger Station, creating and establishing a Monarch Waystation there. She has helped over a dozen groups establish these important habitats, also maintaining waystations at the Cradle of Forestry and many civic locations in Brevard.