Laura and Bill Foell recently spotted this monarch butterfly in the pollinator plot on their farm near Schaller, Iowa. Flowering plants that bloom into the fall, such as the goldenrod shown here, provide nectar for butterflies and bees.
Depleted monarch butterflies and honeybees could get a boost from Iowa farmers over the next few years...
AMES, Iowa — Nearly half of Iowa farmers say in a recent Iowa Farm and Rural Life Poll that they are willing to plant monarch breeding habitat but are unsure how much land or money they would invest in the effort. Good monarch breeding habitat includes...
Milkweed is crucial to the survival of the monarch butterfly, but since the Midwest was settled and turned to agriculture, a lot of the habitat has gone. The Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium, organized by Iowa State University, involves agricultural organizations looking for ways to work with farmers to convert land to monarch habitat without disrupting production...
Read the Iowa Monarch Conservation Consortium's Strategic Goals.
Click on the map right to see the progress of monarchs migrating north from Mexico.
We want our recommendations for monarch habitat improvement to be scientifically sound. Research projects in summer 2016 include:
- efforts to evaluate nine species of milkweed on plots at Iowa State University research farms
- a project to discover optimal monarch breeding, forage and roosting habitat characteristics in Iowa's patchy landscape and
- a survey of milkweed species and monarch occurrence, plant density, and population to establish baseline data.