Episode 10: The Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary

Trip Start Mar 14, 2004
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Mexico  , Michoacán,
Thursday, February 25, 2010

Paid to Play Episode 10:  The one about one of the coolest things I've ever seen; the winter home for millions of Monarch butterflies.

As far as life on the road goes, after six years of living out of my backpack, the El Rosario Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary was one of my career travel highlights.  Every year, an estimated 150-300 million Monarch butterflies return to Central Mexico from their northern migration to the U.S. and Canada.  It is one of the longest and most spectacular migrations in the natural world.  It is also understood very little.  The Monarchs that return to Mexico are three or more generations removed from their ancestors that made the initial journey north.  So the mystery still remains;  how do the great great grandchildren of the original migrants know how to return to a place in Mexico they've never visited before?  And why would they make such a long, dangerous, and exhausting trip covering 2000 miles or more anyway?  And with the new immigration law in Arizona, how many will be detained for not carrying their "papers"?  For now let's leave it to the scientists and Arizona politicians to figure out while we enjoy the phenomenon.  The photos from this visit are pretty cool and really worth a look.
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Eric on

I enjoyed your Mexico post. It looks like you had a good time there. My blog is looking for travel photos. If you have time, email us some at dirtyhippiesblog@gmail.com and check us out at dirty-hippies.blogspot.com

Continued fun on your travels,

Nancy W on

Nice selection of pictures, Jeff.

Zane on

These are amazing pictures, what an awesome trip. My husband and I are planning a trip here in Dec. Did you have any fears traveling in Mexico? We have been told that it's really not safe to go.

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