Monarch butterflies are in trouble here in RI and all along the east coast.
When given a preference for their southern journey,
they favor saving energy by gliding along the sea breezes
from New England southward and then cutting over to Mexico.
For the long migration they need high quality nectar
that they get from RI shoreline plants.
Their food of choice has traditionally been the Seaside Goldenrod
along with a few other fall-blooming RI natives.
Due to beach erosion along with waterfront development,
the available nectar from their favorite plants
for coastal-migrating has been drastically reduced.
RI monarchs are now forced to fly inland in search of nectar
which makes them use more energy at a time when they have little to spare.