Our Sunday tradition and evening farewell filled the sky with the color and movement from one of nature’s most beautiful creatures, the Western Pennsylvania Monarch. Over 200 butterflies took flight in a mass release - a fitting send-off celebration (presented by Oliver Outdoor) for the 2018 Regatta weekend. Guests also received individual butterflies, gently housed in special envelopes and distributed in honor of a special someone or in memory of a loved one.
Why do we do the Native Butterfly Release?
"Our state parks in Pennsylvania conserve nearly 300,000 acres of lands for the public to enjoy in many ways, but humans are not the only ones to benefit. Moraine’s 16,725 acres provides habitat for many wild animal species. Monarch butterflies, whose population across North America has alarmingly decreased, are dependent upon the milkweed plant. There are four species of milkweed native to PA, and we have introduced each of them in areas of the Moraine, and encourage their natural reproduction. Here at the park, we have five areas specifically managed to promote native wildflowers, such as milkweed. Volunteers and partner groups working with park staff have prepared ground, sown seed, and managed these areas to encourage milkweed and other native plants to provide not only educational messages and enjoyment, but to serve as habitat for resident populations, and provide way stations for migrating monarchs." - Natalie Simon, DCNR
More information coming soon about the 2019 Butterfly Release!