Ten Fascinating Facts You Didn’t Know About Monarchs

1. Monarch butterflies that migrate to Goleta come from the western Rocky Mountains.

2. The monarchs that spend their winter at Ellwood have never been to Goleta. They are five generations removed from last year’s visitors.

3. Migrating monarchs can fly at speeds up to 50km/hr.

4. Migrating monarchs live up to 9 months. Monarchs that don’t migrate live two to five weeks.

5. Monarch caterpillars only eat milkweed. Eating milkweed makes monarch caterpillars and butterflies poisonous.

6. Wild monarchs lay 300-400 eggs in their lifetime.

7. Male monarchs have a dot on each of their hind wings. This is a pheromone sac that helps them attract a mate.

8. Ellwood Main Monarch Aggregation Site is one of the largest overwintering sites in California.

9. Last year there were over 27,000 monarchs at Ellwood Main.

10. You can see large clusters of monarchs at Ellwood Main each winter from November to February.

Since 2007, the City of Goleta has trained docents to enhance the visitor experience at Ellwood Main, and lead field trips for school and community groups. You can find docents at Ellwood Main viewing platform on weekends from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., November through February.  For more information visit www.GoletaButterflyGrove.com.