The New York Times published a letter to the editor written by Ernest Williams, the William R. Kenan Professor of Biology Emeritus, titled Challenges Facing the Monarch Butterfly on March 7. In response to a Feb. 28 article titled Monarch Butterfly Migration Rebounds Easing Some Fears, Williams pointed out that, “As encouraging as this report may be, however, it shows an increase in a single year within a 20-year overall downward trend; this year’s measurement remains less than a quarter of what it was 20 years ago.”

He warned, “The challenges facing monarchs remain. Logging continues in the Mexican forests, where the butterflies overwinter, and habitat with native milkweeds and nectar plants is declining in the central and northern United States and southern Canada.”

Williams spoke at the Ithaca Native Landscape Symposium on “Monarchs, Milkweeds, and Migration” on March 4 and will present a lecture titled “The Endangered Migration of Monarch Butterflies” on March 9 at the Fayetteville Free Library in Fayetteville for the Onondaga Audubon Society. 

Williams is a board member of the Monarch Butterfly Fund, an international N.G.O.

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