monarch butterfly

[ mon-erk buht-er-flahy, mon-ahrk ]


  1. a large, deep-orange butterfly, Danaus plexippus, having black and white markings, the larvae of which feed on the leaves of milkweed: highly valued as a pollinator, the monarch butterfly is currently not evaluated by the IUCN, but the protection of the species and its habitat is central to several conservation efforts.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of monarch butterfly1

First recorded in 1885–90

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Example Sentences

For the past three decades, monarch butterflies have been dwindling.

There are also migratory insects that conservationists are trying to save, not control, such as the monarch butterfly.

From Vox

It’s thought that a time-compensated sun compass, as it is called, is one of the tools that migrating monarch butterflies use to maintain their headings.

One species I would be particularly sad to lose is the monarch butterfly.

What was largely a bottom-up, citizen-powered effort to save the struggling monarch butterfly migration has shifted toward a top-down conversation between the federal government, private industry and large-tract landowners.

I saw one exploring the disk of a sunflower, in company with a splendid monarch butterfly.

The chrysalis (b) is suggestive of that of the Monarch butterfly.

Both the larv and adults of the monarch butterfly are distasteful to birds, by their possession of an acrid body-fluid.

For a full account of the life-history of the monarch butterfly, see "Scudder's Life of a Butterfly."

She knew where the Monarch butterfly went on his winter migration.


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