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Blog Posts

silvery checkerspot butterfly on a red and yellow flower
Read article: 6 ways to support native pollinators in Illinois and beyond
6 ways to support native pollinators in Illinois and beyond
Pollinators are an important part of healthy ecosystems. There are a few easy steps you can take to help support pollinators in your landscape....
bee on sedum
Read article: Choose native plants for ecological benefits and wildlife resources
Choose native plants for ecological benefits and wildlife resources
Are you looking to select plants that support local wildlife, conserve water, and enhance the overall ecosystem in Central Illinois? Here are some...
A monarch butterfly on an aster flower.
Read article: Monarch butterflies migrating through Illinois
Monarch butterflies migrating through Illinois
Migratory species across North America are on the move as the fall season progresses toward winter.  Right now is the ideal time to observe bird...
spotted moth on leaf
Read article: Protecting pollinators: Beyond bees
Protecting pollinators: Beyond bees
Approximately 35% of our food crops depend on pollinators to produce what we like to eat, according to the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation...

News Releases

Fly on over to the Butterfly Festival on June 1
 This summer, our Illinois backyards and gardens will play host to over 150 distinct butterfly species. Among them reigns the monarch, cherished as Illinois' state butterfly. Embrace the enchantment of these delicate creatures and discover ways to nurture their habitats for continued...
Monarch caterpillars crawling around milkweed plants.
Butterflies can eat to live, live to eat in a balanced garden
URBANA, Ill. — A favorite thing about visiting gardens in the summer is catching sight of a butterfly enjoying nectar from a brightly colored zinnia or a monarch caterpillar munching on a milkweed leaf. When designing a butterfly garden, expand and balance plant selection to provide more than...
person holding black and orange butterfly
Explore the magical world of butterflies!
OREGON, Ill. - Does your child enjoy the outdoors and learning about the natural world? The Junior Master Naturalist program is the perfect way for your 9-12 year old to explore and discover the wonders nature. University of Illinois Extension staff and volunteers in Ogle County will provide...


Monarch Butterfly Status Update with Brodie Dunn

Brodie Dunn chats about the recent listing of the monarch butterfly as an endangered species by the IUCN. What does that mean for us in Illinois where monarchs spend their summers? We dive into the most recent scientific publications to determine how the monarch population is doing according to...

Day 17: Releasing Our Butterflies

Our butterfly adventure is coming to a close, but not before we say goodbye to our special butterfly friends. Let's take one last look at our butterflies and watch as they head out into the world on their next adventure!