What’s the Smoky Mountains Connection to the “Mountain of Butterflies” in Mexico? And How Can You Be a Part of It?

The “Mountain of Butterflies” in Mexico is the winter habitat for millions of beautiful orange and black Monarch Butterflies. In 1980, the habitat became officially known as the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve, and like the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, it’s also designated a World Heritage Site. But what’s the connection between these two places and how can you be a part of this amazing world of butterflies?

monarch-butterfly-tagging-great-smoky-mountains

Some of the butterflies that winter in Mexico have traveled through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and have been tagged by volunteers via the Great Smoky Mountains Monarch Watch Project led by the staff of the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. 

In the summer of 2015, Jaimie Maussan, a journalist from Mexico, visited Cades Cove and presented National Park and Tremont officials a 14-year-old Smokies Monarch Butterfly tag that was recovered from a part of the reserve known as El Rosario. The tag had been placed on a female monarch in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on October 4, 2001.

How can you and your family be a part of the fun and exciting Great Smoky Mountains Monarch Watch Project?

The Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont offers opportunities for volunteers to tag monarch butterflies every year in September and October as they migrate to Mexico for the winter. The program allows scientist to learn about migration patterns and population which sadly has been in steady decline over the years.

You and your family can have a great outing in the fall as you run through the beautiful fields of Cades Cove with butterfly nets and have experts on hand to help you tag  the Monarchs. The staff at Tremont will also assist in identifying other butterfly and insect species you may catch.

For more information on exact dates in September and October for the tagging events, visit Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont and be sure to check out their Facebook page for other great activities and programs offered for students and families.

More Hey Smokies Features:

Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains!
Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains!...
Take a Scenic Drive on Moonshiner 28 near the Great Smoky Mountains! Perhaps no image is more stereotypical of the rural South than that of the [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience...
Smoky Mountain Winter Experience event is scheduled for January 27 -29, 2020 at the Ramsey Hotel in Pigeon Forge. This inaugural event will offe[Read More >>]
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains...
5 Awesome Winter Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains! We love winter in the Smoky Mountains. The crowds thin out and the traffic slows down. Cle[Read More >>]
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater...
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Hunter Hills Theater. Gatlinburg is widely known as a national vacation destination offering[Read More >>]
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe...
New Year Beans And Greens Recipe. What is behind the Southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas and collard greens on New Years day? Some folk[Read More >>]
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball...
New Years Eve Bootlegger's Ball will ring in 2020 Tuesday, December 31, 2019. This roaring good time will be held at Junction 35 Spirits in Pige[Read More >>]
German Christmas Lebkuchen Recipe
German Christmas Lebkuchen Recipe...
German Christmas Lebkuchen recipe is one of the most beloved and popular Christmas treats in Deutschland. The recipe dates back to the 14th cent[Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming...
Great Smoky Mountains Oconaluftee Holiday Homecoming. The annual holiday homecoming at the Oconaluftee Visitors Center is scheduled for Saturday[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree...
Smoky Mountain Fraser Fir Trees, America's Favorite Christmas Tree.  The Fraser fir, which can reach some 55-feet tall in the wild, is the only [Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past...
Great Smoky Mountain Annual Festival Of Christmas Past Saturday, December 14, 2019. The event will be held at Sugarlands Visitor Center beginnin[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon...
Smoky Mountain Long Cold Full Moon is on the rise! The final full moon for 2019 and the decade will reach its apex at 12:12 a.m. on December 12t[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Winterfest
Smoky Mountain Winterfest...
Smoky Mountain Winterfest begins November 22, 2019 and runs through February 15, 2020. This celebration of light gives our mountain communities [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe...
Smoky Mountain Southern Mac And Cheese Recipe is the perfect side dish for any meal and sometimes it is a great meal all by itself. All you [Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020...
Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Event 2020. It’s never to early to start making plans to see the Synchronous Fireflies (and the Blue Ghost Fi[Read More >>]
Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event
Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event...
  Biltmore Downton Abbey Exhibition Special Event will be featured through April 7, 2020. Costumes, sets and more are part of the new Down[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut...
Smoky Mountain Elk Rut is heating up in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.The fall mating season begins each year around mid-September and is [Read More >>]
Dollywood Light The Way 5K
Dollywood Light The Way 5K...
Dollywood Light The Way 5K is scheduled for Friday November 15, 2019 at Dollywood. This annual event is celebrating its seventh year running. Th[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon...
Smoky Mountain Full Beaver Moon is set to rise November 12, 2019. There is no place more special to view the rise of a full moon than Great Smok[Read More >>]
Don't Feed The Bears Event
Don't Feed The Bears Event...
Don't Feed The Bears Event benefitting Appalachian Bear Rescue will be Saturday, November 16, 2019. The event will be held at the Enchanted Vall[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event...
Great Smoky Mountains Stargazing Event will be held at the Highlands Science Learning Center Friday, November 15, 2019 in North Carolina. The Hi[Read More >>]