MJV’s newest partner, Audubon International, is a global non-profit organization with an interest in fostering environmental sustainability in the places people live, work and play. With a wide range of programs involving high-quality environmental education, such as the global Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program, it is no surprise that they have made great ecological stewardship gains in communities, neighborhoods, and with businesses over the last thirty years.
“Managing properties for pollinators, like monarchs & other butterflies, is a great way to pull together best practices to protect water quality, diversify wildlife habitat, improve aesthetics of golf and more. While you can’t promote everything on the same acre, we certainly can provide for multiple ecological services needed by communities by providing resources critical to monarch conservation,” says Christine Kane, Audubon International’s Executive Director.
Their programs strive to facilitate the sustainable management of land, water, wildlife, and other natural resources. Audubon International achieves this by educating property managers, program administrators and others about best management practices. Their Monarchs in the Rough program works to establish monarch habitat on golf courses across the country and beyond. They estimate that in the United States alone, there are 100,000 acres of available space to create this habitat. If these areas are improved to have 200 milkweed stems per acre, the program could offer 20 million milkweed stems toward the 1-1.5 billion goal!
“Golf courses and other lands that dot the landscape have incredible potential to not only create additional monarch and pollinator habitat, but draw attention from the public eye to this important conservation issue,” says Wendy Caldwell, MJV Coordinator. “Audubon International is a welcomed partner in our endeavor to increase habitat for monarchs on all landscapes, including golf courses!”
Audubon International offers a variety of certification programs alongside their habitat restoration efforts. For more information about these programs, visit their website.
The Monarch Joint Venture is a national partnership of federal and state agencies, non-governmental organizations, and academic programs working together to conserve the monarch butterfly migration. The content in this article does not necessarily reflect the positions of all Monarch Joint Venture partners. Header photo courtesy of Audubon International Board Member & Monarchs In The Rough participant, Matt Ceplo.