The Metropolitan Monarch Alliance (MMA) is a collaboration of schools, youth and community groups, public gardens and environmental centers, businesses, government agencies, and international Monarch conservation groups, funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Its mission is to learn about and to create habitat for Monarch butterflies and other wildlife across NYC. Monarch habitats are sites containing a variety of nectar-producing plants, especially milkweed, a family of plants that is the sole host for Monarch butterfly eggs and caterpillars. Establishing habitat for Monarchs also provides connections or steppingstones between habitats linking populations of other species of butterfly, bees, dragonflies, and birds.
Monarch migration is one of the wonders of the animal kingdom. These fragile creatures travel thousands of miles, and the full migration cycle from Mexico to New England and back takes four generations, with each generation travelling to areas they have never seen before. Across their migratory range, Monarch butterflies are threatened by habitat loss, climate change, and the use of harmful pesticides.
MMA will host workshops to train teachers and communities to establish Monarch butterfly habitats; to collect, rear, and release Monarch butterflies in time for their annual migration; and to conduct research and citizen science projects that will inform future conservation efforts. Workshops will provide teachers with the training and tools to customize and create a versatile, interdisciplinary suite of classroom activities that align with the NYS Common Core and to supervise grade-appropriate research projects as students rear and release Monarch butterflies in the classroom or garden. By connecting schools and communities to Monarch butterflies and the natural environment, MMA will insure the long-term health of Monarch butterfly populations for future generations to enjoy.
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This web page was prepared by Queens College/CUNY under award from the United States Environmental Protection Committee (EPA). The statements, findings, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Environmental Protection Agency (coEPA).