Monarch Butterflies at Ardenwood Historic Farm

Ardenwood Historic Farm Several people waited online outside Ardenwood Historic Farm (Fremont) on New Year’s Day to view the monarch butterflies that migrate there in search of warmth. They travel hundreds of miles from the western U.S. and Canada to escape temperatures that can hit below freezing. There’s been a great decline in their population as many as 25,000 were counted in 1997 compared to about 1,600 at the farm this year.

Ardenwood Historic Farm There were two walking tours that day and docents were available at the end location to answer questions. A telescope is set-up to give visitors a closer look at the many high up in the trees. A few monarchs that had already expired were gathered together to allow you to touch and examine them. There were many families visiting and unfortunately the availability of a few they could touch didn’t dissuade them from handling the fragile creatures that were alive, kids and parents alike.

Ardenwood Historic Farm Some were accidentally stepped on; the temperature was still too cold for them to fly that morning. When it’s warm they fly in search of flowers and water. Hopefully, if the crowds grow the docents will speak up more when the monarchs are mishandled since they’re already in decline. They usually stay to mate until the first week of February but the temperature changes may have them migrating sooner. This time of year has been warmer in past years causing them confusion and setting flight earlier than normal.

Ardenwood Historic Farm is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays, year round, including Labor Day and Memorial Day.

You can check their Facebook for the latest special event and ticket prices: https://www.facebook.com/ArdenwoodHF/?fref=ts


 

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