The Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus (Linnaeus)) is the Texas state insect and is one of my favorite butterflies found in Texas. But they can be found all over North America, Mexico Northern South America, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Australia, New Guinea, Ceylon, India, the Azores, and the Canary Islands.
Monarch Butterfly Description
In its adult stage, they are orange with black wing veins and bodies with a wingspan of 8.9-10.2 cm. But the color range varies by region.
The males have a black patch on the hind wings the black veins on the wings are narrower than the females. They are also a little larger than the females.
Monarch Butterfly Migration Patterns
The Monarch Butterfly is the only butterfly to migrate both north and south as birds do. Monarchs start their migration in North America to the south in August (or later in some regions) until first frost. Then in the spring they make their way north once again.These migrations cover great distances and no individual butterfly makes the round trip. During these migrations, females lay eggs for the next generation.
The migrations are great journeys and take longer than the lifespan of most monarchs (2 months for butterflies born in early summer). For more information, check the wiki page.
Monarch Butterfly Habitat
Monarchs can be found almost anywhere. Most commonly, they are found in fields, meadows, prairie remnants, urban/suburban parks, gardens, trees, and roadsides. Butterflies are not common as they use to be.
With the destruction of their habits, they are harder to find. If you want them in your yard, you need provide their favorite nectar plants and host plants. After some time, they will show up.