Every year, monarch butterflies undertake the arduous 3,000-mile journey from the Great Lakes to winter in California and Mexico. Estimates suggest that the monarch population has declined between 22 percent and 72 percent in the past decade alone. Experts attribute the decline to habitat loss and climate change. Planting more milkweed and nectar-producing flowers could help monarchs, but individual efforts can only do so much. Policies that address climate change, maintain protected lands and curb cultivation on marginal land with little commercial value would have far greater impact — for butterflies and many other forms of wildlife. We should do what we can to preserve them for future generations.
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