Colorful Butterflies Make Visit To Shore
SPRING LAKE, N.J. (AP) _ Thousands of orange Monarch butterflies, apparently diverted from their migration south by Hurricane Gloria, have fluttered down along the New Jersey shore.
The insects, one of just a few species of butterflies to migrate, stopped to feed on the nectar of goldenrod plants on their fall journey to central Mexico.
″There were thousands of them and they have been here for several days,″ Angel Librizzi, of this Monmouth County community, said Sunday. ″I took my husband out to see them. It is quite an incredible sight.″
″They were just all over the place and it was really neat,″ said Lauri Miskin, also of Spring Lake. ″They (the Monarch) were just kind of hanging out.
″It was a warm afternoon and a lot of people were out walking on the boardwalk. The butterflies just added to a perfect day,″ she said.
William W. Metterhouse, of the state Department of Agriculture, said the Monarch may have been thrown off its migration by Hurricane Gloria late last month.
″I can’t remember the Monarch ever being this late before,″ he said. ″They are usually well into their migratory path by now,″ he said.
The Monarch is found throughout much of the United States and around the world.
James Staples, spokesman for the state Department of Environmental Protection, said Cape May is the usual ″jumping off point″ for the Monarch as it begins its southward flight to central Mexico.
He said entomologists have only recently discovered the Monarch’s southern destination.