Monarch Wings Across America

Monarch Wings Across America (MWAA) is a multi-project initiative that creates habitat and refines science around monarch butterfly issues in the United States to help address the relatively recent alarming decline in monarchs across both its eastern and western populations. So far under the MWAA program, Pollinator Partnership has led four projects across the United States to help promote monarch butterfly populations throughout North America.

Scroll down to learn more about these projects, explore opportunities to get involved with P2's monarch conservation efforts, and click the project pages, links, and other tabs to discover useful tools, information, and resources to learn what you can do to help this species in peril.

Project Wingspan

Project Wingspan (PW) is a two-year project supported by a grant from the National Fish and Wildlife Federation to the non-profit the Pollinator Partnership which is leading a coalition of partners in an effort to enhance land across the Midwest to support our imperiled pollinators.

Project Wingspan seeks to increase monarch and Rusty Patched Bumble Bee (RPBB) habitat by building off the success of our last NFWF grant funded project (Monarch Wings Across the Eastern Broadleaf Forest – MWAEBF) and engaging public land managers and private land stewards throughout the 8-state target region of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin through a series of monarch habitat enhancement activities with the goal of establishing 10,000, acres of monarch and RPBB habitat.

Learn More About Project Wingspan

Monarch Wings Across California

Monarch Wings Across California (MWAC) is a new initiative modeled after the success of the MWAO with initial funding from the Monarch Joint Venture and the Hillsborough Garden Club. This program aims to establish monarch research and habitat sites throughout the state of California for the species lesser-studied western population. Three goals of this project are to:

  1. Establishment of long-term habitat sites for migrating monarchs in California,
  2. Improved understanding of the migration patterns and forage requirements of California monarch butterflies,
  3. Collection of California monarch habitat restoration data to inform restoration efforts and indicate potential seed sources for future projects.

The MWAC program is fueled by tax-deductible donations. To find out how you can get involved, please contact Kelly Rourke at kr@pollinator.org.

Monarch Wings Across Ohio

Monarch Wings Across Ohio was launched by Pollinator Partnership with generous support from The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation and The J.M. Smucker Company in response to the 2014 Presidential directive on supporting the monarch migration. Monarchs are the most recognized butterfly among the public in the United States, and yet, their numbers have suffered a steep decline over the past decade. The loss of monarch overwintering, breeding, and migratory habitats are playing significant roles in the disappearance of this unique natural phenomenon. In acknowledgment to the decreasing number of monarchs making the annual migration, Ohioans have stepped forward in unprecedented numbers to make a difference. Support for monarchs starts with one thing that everyone can do: plant for monarchs!

Monarch butterflies require regionally specific host milkweeds on which they can lay their eggs as well as a diverse assortment of nectar-supplying plants for energy to successfully complete the migration. Monarch Wings Across Ohio has worked with a diverse coalition of partners to install monarch habitat research plots containing Ohio native wildflowers across partners' land in the following settings; urban ecosystems, agriculture, corporate lands, and public parks/gardens. These monarch habitat research plots not only beautify the spaces they occupy but also have been able to provide valuable insight into monarch foraging preferences.

Regionally-based field researchers were hired across Ohio to collect data on the plants visited by foraging monarchs to gain a better understanding of which of the Ohio-native wildflowers included in the study were most used by the monarchs to fuel their migration. Through the support of partners throughout Ohio that joined the program, this research has been completed and a set of Ohio-specific guides have been created to help empower Ohioans with the knowledge and tools to support monarch conservation on their lands.

The Monarch Wings Across Ohio program is fueled by tax-deductible donations and the MWAO specialty license plate. To find out how you can get involved, please contact Amber Barnes at ab@pollinator.org.

Learn More About MWAO

Monarch Wings Across the Eastern Broadleaf Forest

Monarch Wings Across the Eastern Broadleaf Forest increased monarch habitat by engaging public land managers and private land stewards throughout the Eastern Broadleaf Forest-Continental Province (EBF-CP) through a series of monarch habitat enhancement activities with the goal of establishing 4,688, acres of monarch habitat. Monarchs do not consider political boundaries in their migration, and the perimeters of the Eastern Broadleaf Forest span multiple state boundaries. Cooperation among these states and their conservation partners increased seed resources without jeopardizing native plant material ranges. This project was funded by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and was in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program (Il, IN, and OH), Illinois Department of Natural Resources – Mason State Nursery, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative, and Pheasants Forever (IL and OH).

This project ran from 2016 - 2019

Learn More About MWAEBF