Monarch butterfly

(KMAland) -- It is very likely that sometime before the end of the year the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will make a decision that could have ramifications for farmers trying to control milkweed in their fields.

The Monarch Butterfly has been on Fish and Wildlife's Endangered Species petition list for several years. That means nothing more than it is on a shortlist to possibly be moved to the candidate list. The candidate list is one step closer to the proposed list. That's where the regulatory issues would be hashed out says University of Illinois Extension Entomologist Nick Seiter.

“Certainly, any conservation efforts targeted at the Monarch in this part of the world are going to focus on habitat. Which, for the adults, is flowering plants. So, general pollinator habitat. For the larvae, and more importantly from the developmental standpoint and the standpoint of supporting the population, is milkweed.”

The Monarch Butterfly lays its eggs on milkweed. Farmers work to keep the weed out of their fields. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is expected to decide if it will move the Monarch to the Endangered Species candidate list this year. The process is petition to include, candidate for listing, and finally proposed for regulation.

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