Monday, November 17, 2014

A City of Their Own --- Day 3/305

Walk: Just up and down stairs
Distance: A block or two, home yoga practice

A friend of Ciwt's was going to leave for Sacramento at 5:00 a.m. Sunday to see the overwintering Monarch Butterflies at Natural Bridges Beach.  She invited Ciwt, but she was busy with Cinema Club thus sparing her or anyone else her 5 a.m. self.

In winter the Monarchs form a "city in the trees" at Monarch Grove which is filled with winter-flowering eucalyptus trees and protected by the state from human encroachment. The trees provide a food source for the Monarchs and also provide shelter from the wind and safe places for them to cluster together for warmth.

Then around mid-February they fly off to the valley regions west of the Rockies where its companion plant, milkweed, is found in abundance.  They drink nectar from milkweed flowers and lay eggs on their leaves.  Milkweed also contains a toxin that is ingested by the caterpillar then remain in the butterfly when born providing protection from predators that would otherwise eat them.

Who knew?  Wonder if my friend made that drive.  It must have been enchanting if she did.

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