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.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Our Community Mourns

Cape May Point will seem a little empty this fall when the field season begins for the Monarch Monitoring Project.  Edie Schuhl passed away last week.  Edie and her husband Bill planted and maintained a wonderful, wildlife-friendly garden at their home in Cape May Point.  I'm sure more monarchs have been tagged in the Schuhl's garden than anywhere else around Cape May.  Edie and Bill always welcomed our team into their garden and into their home, offering snacks, cold beverages, and a friendly smile or hug (or both).  In the photo below, Edie & Bill are in their garden, visiting with MMP Field Coordinator Louise Zemaitis and 2012 Field Naturalist Julia Druce.  Louise & Julia are seated on a bench that was placed here strictly for the benefit of the monarch taggers.

It wasn't enough for Edie & Bill to simply create one haven for monarchs and other wildlife.  They were instrumental in the development of another amazing butterfly garden a block away from their home.  The Triangle Park, owned by the Borough of Cape May Point, is now another haven for monarchs and a spot where we engage in tagging and educational outreach.  The old boat, shown below, became a picturesque flower box at the north corner of the park.

2014 - 2015 Field Naturalist Lindsey Brendel gives an
educational program at the Triangle Park.

Edie touched the lives of many during her time on earth.  Some of her accomplishments are noted on her obituary:!/Obituary.  But what many of us around Cape May remember most vividly are the ready smiles, the heartfelt hugs, the upbeat attitude, and the endlessly deep level of compassion she shared with family, friends, neighbors, strangers, and the natural world.

Edie & Bill in their garden
Many of us who are involved with the Monarch Migration Project have vowed to help Bill maintain the gardens at his house and at the Triangle Park.  The first work day will be Wednesday, July 20, beginning early in the morning to beat the heat.  We feel that we can pay tribute to Edie by working to keep her gardens vibrant and healthy.  Please let us know if you'd like to help out on July 20 or at a future date.

Many groups visit Edie & Bill's garden each fall.
This group included members of the NJ House of Delegates.

2014 Field Naturalist Angela Demarse on the tagging bench
in Edie & Bill's garden.

We'll all see Edie's spirit soaring with the monarchs
over Cape May Point every fall.

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