Our Monarchs and Milkweed

We help protect monarch butterflies – and we hope that by sharing our knowledge and passion for milkweed, we can inspire others to join us in protecting this vital plant and the creatures that rely on it!

Pan the pit is pretty sure he should be the star of every photo session.

Monarch butterflies are one of the most iconic and beloved species of butterfly in the world. They are known for their distinctive orange and black wings and their annual migration from Canada and the United States to Mexico. However, monarch populations have been declining in recent years, and one of the primary factors contributing to this decline is the loss of their main food source, milkweed.

At Entangled Acres Animal Sanctuary, we understand the importance of milkweed to the survival of monarch butterflies, and we are committed to protecting and preserving this vital plant. Milkweed is the only plant that monarch caterpillars eat, and without it, they cannot complete their life cycle and continue to thrive.

Milkweed is also essential for the adult monarch butterflies, as it provides nectar for them to feed on. Without a sufficient supply of milkweed, monarch populations will continue to decline, and we could lose these beautiful creatures forever. Luckily for all, Entangled acres has lots of milkweed!

Fun fact: our milkweed “migrates” – maybe it’s trying to mimic the monarch? Not quite. The exact locations where milkweed springs up each year on our property has varied due to yearly variations in our microclimates, natural competition with other plants, and pressure from pests. The last few years, our milkweed wandered around the main field – but it actually started off in the backfield! The previous property owners kept the two big fields mowed for livestock hay, so there wasn’t much diversity or benefit to wildlife… But a few years of strategic rewilding has made a big difference in biodiversity! The milkweed gradually volunteered itself to take over a corner of the biggest field, and the original patch disappeared as a succession of taller plants including quaking aspen have taken over their original spot.

For those of you without “volunteer” populations, planting milkweed is a simple and effective way to help monarch butterflies and other pollinators thrive. Milkweed is easy to grow and comes in a variety of species, each with its unique characteristics and benefits. By planting milkweed in your garden, you can help support monarch populations and contribute to the health of the environment.

By planting milkweed, supporting organizations that protect monarch habitats, and spreading awareness about the importance of milkweed, we can all make a difference in the survival of these beloved creatures. Visit us at Entangled Acres Animal Sanctuary to learn more about our efforts to protect and preserve milkweed and the monarch butterflies that depend on it – and, depending on the season, you can go on your own adventure looking for monarchs, or collecting seeds for your own garden.

Follow us to stay in the loop about our upcoming efforts: adding other monarch food sources such as Joe-Pye-weed, tracking monarch population counts, and mapping out the location of their food sources here.

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