3 years ago



Submitted this 26th day

Submitted this 26th day of August, 2014 Pursuant to Section 4(b) of the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), 16 U.S.C. § 1533(b); Section 553(e) of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. § 553(e); and 50 C.F.R. § 424.14(a), the Center for Biological Diversity and Center for Food Safety as co-lead petitioners joined by the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation and Dr. Lincoln Brower hereby petition the Secretary of the Interior, through the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (“FWS,” “Service”), to protect the monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus plexippus) as a threatened species. FWS has jurisdiction over this petition. This petition sets in motion a specific process, placing definite response requirements on the Service. Specifically, the Service must issue an initial finding as to whether the petition “presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted.” 16 U.S.C. § 1533(b)(3)(A). FWS must make this initial finding “[t]o the maximum extent practicable, within 90 days after receiving the petition.” Id. Petitioners also request that critical habitat be designated for the monarch butterfly concurrently with the species being listed, pursuant to 16 U.S.C. § 1533(a)(3)(A) and 50 C.F.R. § 424.12. Monarch ESA Petition 4

TABLE OF CONTENTS Executive Summary 6 Introduction 12 Natural History 15 Taxonomy 15 Description 17 Range 18 Life History 19 Feeding 22 Migration 23 Habitat 27 Population Distribution and Status 33 ESA Protection Is Warranted 44 Threats 45 Factor One: Habitat Loss and Degradation 45 Factor Two: Overutilization 73 Factor Three: Disease and Predation 75 Factor Four: Inadequacy of Existing Regulatory Mechanisms 79 Factor Five: Other Factors Affecting Continued Existence 89 Significant Portion of Range 108 Conclusion 112 Request for Critical Habitat Designation 112 Acknowledgements 113 Works Cited 113 Appendix A: Non-migratory Populations of Danaus plexippus plexippus 147 Appendix B: Proposed Rules to Facilitate Conservation, Science, Citizen Monitoring, and Education 159 Monarch ESA Petition 5

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