Monarch in Hertfordshire, U.K.

Mark Walker mwalker at
Wed Aug 13 09:55:06 EDT 1997

John Murray wrote:

> I have a report of a Monarch butterfly seen in a garden at High Barnet at
> yesterday afternoon (August 12th).  Since this is only the 2nd ever
record for
> Hertfordshire, and the observer was not one of our usual recorders, I am
> him for a full description of the butterfly and the sighting.  
> If correctly identified, I am intrigued to know if this is a genuine
> or an escape from a butterfly house or individual release.  Does anyone
> details of any U.K. sightings this year?  Immigrant moths are starting to
> and I saw the first Red Admiral yesterday, so that would tend to suggest
> immigrant is a possibility.  What about USA information on Monarch
numbers and
> movements this year?  Does it look likely that one could have crossed the
> Atlantic in the last week or two?  

I have no clue as to the likelihood of a Monarch crossing the Atlantic, but
with regard to numbers, the Monarch has been present and relatively common
here in the Northeast since about the middle of June.  They have not been
prolific, but have been increasing over the past few weeks.  The day before
yesterday (8/10) I saw one flying capably 20 meters up in the midst of a
downpour.  I've never seen anything like that (with the exception of a lone
individual taken on the summit of Mt. Whitney at 14,000 ft. in 1970).

Mark Walker
Castleton, VT.

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