Hind Foundation Networking

Conserving Coastal Habitat of the Western Monarch Butterfly

For Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation

In 2010, the Hind Foundation granted $2,500 to the Xerces Society toward program research and expenses. The goal of this project is to protect and restore the Monarch's California overwintering sites by establishing public support and a solid scientific basis for their stewardship. Funds from Hind Foundation were dedicated solely to work on 29 important Monarch overwintering sites in San Luis Obispo County.

The Monarch butterfly is unique among insects for its long-distance seasonal migration and its spectacular winter gatherings. The California coast is the only place in the U.S. that hosts this amazing phenomenon. Here a select few tree groves shelter the Monarchs, providing a vital resource for the butterflies and ensuring the continuity of their winter migration. However, ongoing monitoring shows that the number of Monarchs returning to these sites has dropped by nearly 90% over the past decade. These declines highlight the need to gain a clear understanding of the butterflies' status and habitat needs, and take appropriate conservation actions.

Noteworthy Results

  • Accessible Data
    Staff and volunteers collected all available data on the overwintering sites and created a single, easily useable data source. Information on the current habitat conditions was collected and incorporated into draft guidelines for review by land managers, volunteers, and scientists.
  • Increased Awareness
    Through outreach, media coverage, and public involvement, an increased numbers of citizen and land managers are engaged in the efforts to conserve overwintering habitat.

Area of Funding: Ecosystem Conservation
Type of Funding: Supplemental Grant
Amount Funded: $2,500
Year Funded: 2010
Year Completed: 2010

About the Organization
Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation
4828 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Portland, OR 97215
(503) 232-6639

The Xerces Society is a nonprofit organization that protects wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat. Established in 1971, the Society is at the forefront of invertebrate protection worldwide, harnessing the knowledge of scientists and the enthusiasm of citizens to implement conservation programs.