News, Events & Research Updates
Video: Pacific Grove Monarch Habitat Enhancement
Cal Poly Students, and Monarch Alert researchers joined the City of Pacific Grove in planting trees in the Pacific Grove Monarch Sanctuary in late March, 2011. In fall 2010, the potted trees had been placed in the sanctuary by Citizen Scientist Bob Pachelli. He staged them in areas that he thought needed to be "filled in" in order to block winds, and provide roosting trees for the butterflies. The March planting was done once the overwintering monarchs had dispersed in spring 2011. Dr. Stuart Weiss was responsible for developing a management plan for the Sanctuary and coordinating the permanent placement of these trees. The City arborist, and Monarch Alert also provided advice on tree placement. "This was truly an 'all stakeholders' venture," said Cal Poly Biology Professor Francis Villablanca. "Way to work together!"
Click here or on the photo above to watch the video on YouTube — make sure your pop-up blocker is off.
New: Reader's Corner
In an article published in the journal Molecular Ecology, researchers report on a monarch butterfly gene that has experienced two mutations. Previous research proposed that both of these mutations may provide monarch butterflies with resistance to cardenolide First, something about cardenolides and then back to mutations. Cardenolides are a type of steroid. Many plants contain its derivatives, collectively known as cardenolides, including many that contain structural groups derived from sugars. Cardenolide glycosides are often toxic; specifically, they can stop hearts.
Read Prof. Villablanca's full review of the Molecular Ecology article
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