Birds and Wildlife

Birds and Wildlife Committee Chair 2021-2022:  Irene Bausmith

This committee works for public education and the preservation of birds and wildlife on Long beach Island.  Since June 2016, we have concentrated on educating the public on the plight of Monarch butterflies and on trying to improve their habitat in our local area.   In May of 2021, the Borough of Barnegat Light granted the garden club a separate large area of the  Bay breeze Park to be used for a garden specifically designed as a habitat for all pollinators. Click here to go to the Pollinator Garden page.

 Monarch Population 2020

The eastern monarch butterfly population is down around 53% this year.  The population of butterflies overwintering in Mexico was below levels needed to avoid extinction.  Both the fall and spring migrations had poor weather conditions and 165 acres of habitat were lost to herbicide spraying.  The monarch butterfly is currently being considered by the US government for endangered specie status.  A decision is expected by December. The garden club no longer recommends hand raising of monarchs because studies have shown that, when compared with naturally hatched butterflies, the hand raised butterflies are sometimes confused about the direction they must take to get to Mexico and they are also less physically fit for the journey. We are doing what we can to encourage planting of milkweed for the caterpillars and nectar flowers for the butterflies.
Life Cycle of the Monarch Butterfly
Butterfly Host Plants for South Jersey

Speaking of butterflies...

Attracting Monarchs to your garden…

Here are just a few of the local plants that will draw adult monarchs to your garden. Click on a picture to enlarge.