Monarch Butterfly Migration Featured in
Each year, monarch butterflies travel more than 2,000 mi (3,218 km) one-way in search of a better climate. In the fall, they change their location from colder Canada and the US to sunny Mexico. And in the spring, they return to the north. In both cases, Asheville and the surrounding area are known as a usual stop of their journey. Around 300 million of them stay in North Carolina for a few weeks to enjoy their favorite milkweed and other nectar plants.
There are many North Carolina locations where you can watch butterflies, but the best of them are hidden in the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Great Smoky Mountains. Hike to the Orchard at Altapass, Pounding Mill Overlook, Cherry Cove Overlook, Mount Pisgah, or Black Balsam. At these places, you are guaranteed to see butterflies in their comfortable humid environment.
Butterflies occur in the state twice a year: from May to July when they return from wintering and from mid-September to early October when they fly south.
When can you observe the Monarch butterfly migration in North Carolina and how many butterflies pass through?
Monarch butterfly migration through North Carolina occurs twice a year, from May to July when they return from wintering, and from mid-September to early October when they fly south. Around 300 million Monarch butterflies pass through North Carolina, stopping to rest, feed, and mate before continuing their journey. Show more
What are some popular places to observe the Monarch butterfly migration in North Carolina?
The Monarch butterfly migration can be observed along the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Great Smoky Mountains in North Carolina, where the butterflies fly at the treetop level. Some popular spots to see them include the Orchard at Altapass, Pounding Mill Overlook, Cherry Cove Overlook, Mount Pisgah, and Black Balsam. Show more
What is the duration of the Monarch butterflies’ stay in North Carolina during migration?
Upon arrival in North Carolina, Monarch butterflies stay for a few weeks, feeding on their favorite milkweed plants, one of the only plants Monarch caterpillars feed on, and other nectar plants. They then continue their journey, either north or south, depending on the season and weather patterns. Show more
What plants do Monarch butterflies primarily feed on during migration in North Carolina?
During their migration, Monarch butterflies feed primarily on milkweed plants in North Carolina. This state provides the butterflies with a sufficient supply of milkweed plants, allowing them to sustain their journey. Additionally, they also feed on other plants, such as goldenrod, thistle, and ironweeds, which give them the energy required to continue migratory flights. Show more
What is the estimated number of Monarch butterflies that migrate through North Carolina annually?
Around 300 million Monarch butterflies migrate through North Carolina each year, representing one of the most critical stopovers for Monarchs. Although the actual figure may depend on weather patterns, this location is an ideal setting for the butterflies to rest and feed before completing their long journey north or south. Show more