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Posted on: April 30, 2021

Township designated a Monarch Champion by National Wildlife Federation

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THE WOODLANDS, TEXAS (April 30, 2021) – The National Wildlife Federation has named The Woodlands Township as a Monarch Champion for its commitment to the environment, and specifically to the endangered monarch butterfly. The Woodlands Township is the 10th community in North America to receive this designation.

The award was earned through the work of The Woodlands Township Environmental Services Department, along with other community organizations, and with the commitment and leadership of The Woodlands Township Board of Directors. The Board recognized the importance of devoting resources to programs and activities related to monarch and pollinator habitat creation/restoration. The Township also participated in the Mayors’ Monarch Pledge, which supports monarch habitat and the planting of native milkweed.

“The National Wildlife Federation would like to congratulate The Woodlands Township for this important achievement, which will benefit both people and wildlife,” said Rebeca Quiñonez-Piñón, Monarch Outreach Coordinator with the National Wildlife Federation. “Our team was highly impressed by the work accomplished by The Woodlands Township during its time in the program and beyond. The Woodlands is now part of a very select group of cities and mayors throughout North America that have earned this special achievement, and we are eager to continue working for nature with this community in the future.” 

“We want to perpetuate the beauty of The Woodlands, and what better way than by attracting monarch butterflies to our community,” said Township Chairman Gordy Bunch. “We salute the work of our Environmental Services team in bringing this honor and opportunity to The Woodlands.”

The Woodlands Township proclaimed April 28, 2021, as Monarch Butterfly Day in The Woodlands as part of the ongoing pledge.

The designation has been years in the making. In 2017, representatives of PolliNation, a local non-profit organization, approached the Township Board of Directors requesting assistance in having The Woodlands designated as a monarch butterfly community. 

The Township’s Environmental Services division of the Parks and Recreation Department worked with PolliNation and other local community groups and businesses including Texas Master Naturalists, The Woodlands GREEN, Coulson Tough Elementary Race for Awareness, Woodlands Water Agency, Mercer Botanical Garden, Bayou Land Conservancy, Nature’s Way Resources and Alspaugh’s Ace Hardware, as well as numerous state and national organizations and agencies to build awareness of the need to support the monarch butterfly and all pollinators.

Resident education and engagement provided by the department over the past five years has included:  

  • Milkweed for Monarchs program. Propagated 14,000 native milkweed seedlings and disseminated community wide.
  • Pollinator plantings in a dozen community spaces
  • Dozens of magazine and social media posts
  • Web-based resources to help residents establish pollinator habitat at home
  • Seed giveaways at over 20 outreach events
  • The Annual Pollinator Village Challenge – over 130 home pollinator gardens have been registered through the challenge

 “We look forward to continuing our commitment to providing more habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators. We ask that residents continue to join us in this critical effort by planting native plants in their home landscape and minimizing use of pesticides and herbicides. Together we are making a difference.”  said Township Environmental Services Manager John Geiger.

For more information about The Woodlands Township’s program, please visit www.thewoodlandstownship-tx.gov/plantforpollinators. For more information on the National Wildlife Federation, please visit www.nwf.org.

Read The Woodlands Township’s Monarch Butterfly proclamation.

PHOTO: A butterfly garden, such as the one pictured above, features native plants, minimal use of pesticides and creates habitat for butterflies and other pollinators.

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