THE TEXAS MONARCH FLYWAY STRATEGY (Texas MFS) is a statewide effort to restore, increase and enhance Monarch habitat across four major regions in the state – all of which serve as critical links in the Monarch butterfly’s journey along the Central Flyway from Canada to Mexico and back every year. The Texas MFS also serves to protect habitat for other pollinators that are crucial to local ecosystems and agriculture. The four regions included in the program are: Gulf-Houston, South Texas, North Texas and Hill Country.
The annual migration of Monarch Butterflies is one of the most impressive phenomena in the natural world. Every spring, vast numbers of monarch butterflies undertake a multi-generational journey from their wintering grounds in the mountains of Mexico to temperate areas of the United States thousands of miles to the north where they will summer, only to return back to Mexico in the fall. How the butterflies know to make this journey continues to confound scientists, as no butterfly lives long enough to make the entire journey there and back.
What is known with certainty, however, is that this incredible yearly pilgrimage is under threat from habitat destruction, which has drastically reduced the population of migrants in recent decades. The state of Texas is a crucial link link between the Monarch’s wintering grounds in Mexico and their summer habitat further North, and effectively, the preservation of habitat here is of paramount importance to the continued survival of this natural wonder.