The Monarch Monitoring Project is a long-term study on monarch migration through Cape May, NJ. It is a part of the New Jersey Audubon Research Department, and closely affiliated with the Cape May Bird Observatory.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wednesday update and a bold prediction

The news for Wednesday is much like Tuesday's news.  Strong south winds seem to have monarchs unwilling to leave Cape May Point.  Again we are seeing many monarchs around the Point and the best spots seem to be trees with lots of English Ivy vines.  Much of the ivy is in bloom, providing nectar, and the ivy-covered trees seem to offer protection from the winds.  For the last several nights we have seen many small roosts of 100s of monarchs at scattered locations around Cape May Point.  Roosts can be anywhere, but check especially areas where tall trees are covered with ivy vines.  Some groves of bigtooth aspen have also housed roosts.  We know of roosts on Stites, Yale, Cape, Princeton, Cambridge, East Lake, and Pearl Streets.

Monarchs amidst English Ivy flowers.
Now for the bold prediction, which may or may not prove to be true.  Winds are predicted to shift around to the north overnight.  Tomorrow morning, if the winds aren't too severe and if they are blowing from the north, there could be a major exodus of monarchs from Cape May towards Delaware.  The first two or three hours of the day could be when many thousands of monarchs will be seen leaving Cape May and flying out over Delaware Bay.  Head to any of the dune crossovers in Cape May Point or just walk the beach early tomorrow morning and perhaps you'll see a major departure event.  I think that's where I will be doing at about 7 am tomorrow.  Maybe I'll see you there.

We have been tagging hundreds of monarchs in Cape May this fall.
If you see a tagged monarch, try to get the 3-letter, 3-number code.
This one is RNY 582.  Report the tag number, date, time, and location
to Monarch Watch via or call 1-888-tagging.

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