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Monarch butterflies are disappearing.
Populations . . . have been in precipitous decline for the past 20 years, but scientists aren’t exactly sure what’s causing them to vanish.
. . . .But much of the blame has been placed on farmers and the pesticides . . . that have reduced the milkweed that monarch caterpillars feast on. Now, however, scientists say that may not be the full story.
. . . .
Milkweed is . . . . the insect’s sole food source early in its life cycle. . . .
However. . .according to a recent National Academy of Sciences report on genetically engineered crops, scientists haven’t been able to prove that disappearing milkweed is causing the caterpillars to starve.
[In a] recent paper, [Hidetoshi Inamine, a doctoral student at Cornell University] suggests that declining milkweed may not be the biggest threat to monarchs.
. . . [M]ost of the monarch decline is happening when the butterflies turn around in Canada to head back south, no longer reliant on milkweed. . . .
. . . .
In the interim, some . . . agrochemical companies . . . are stepping up to incentivize farmers to . . . plant milkweed. . . .
Read full, original post: Can Planting More Milkweed Save Monarch Butterflies? It’s Complicated