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Monarch Migration

Monarch butterflies (Danaus Plexippus) perform annual migrations across North America which have been called “one of the most spectacular natural phenomena in the world”.

Starting in August, northern monarch populations begin migrating from southern Canada, through USA, to overwintering sites in central Mexico.  They arrive in November, where they hibernate through the winter. They start the return trip in March, arriving around July. No individual butterfly completes the entire round trip; female monarchs lay eggs for the next generation during the northward migration and four to six generations are involved in the annual cycle.

Monarchs also perform small distance migrations in Australia and New Zealand. There are also some populations in south America and certain southern states that do not migrate.

2 Responses

  1. How long should i let the butterflies stay in the net before release? I want to make sure they’re release on a nice sunny day. Also, do they eat anything while they’re in the net?

    1. Dear Charlane,

      Please contact our team at regarding any questions or concerns you may have. Please find our response to your inquiry below.

      We recommend releasing the butterflies weather permitting within 3 days of hatching. When butterflies hatch they do not feed for the first 2 to 3 days, they are generally released within this time. However, if feeding is required, please visit our Blog and see the section for Butterflies For Release. There are numerous blog posts that go into detail on how to care, feed and release the butterflies.

      Please feel free email our team at if you have any further questions or concerns.

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