On Feb. 2, 2009 I caught a tagged monarch at the Ellwood Main overwintering site in Goleta, California.
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y189/m ... /237aa.jpg
http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y189/m ... /237ac.jpg
This butterfly had been tagged Sept 7 in southeastern Arizona by Joe Billings down near the Mexican border and had flown NORTHWEST to the Santa Barbara area of California - see yellow line in this photo: http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y189/m ... /237Vd.jpg
The green line represents one of Joe's tag recoveries last year at the El Rosario overwintering site in Michoacan, Mexico. http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k75/4af/157xb.jpg
So thanks to the efforts of Joe Billings, we now have two history making tag recoveries in both California and Mexico of wild caught fall migrant monarchs that were tagged within 15 miles of one another in southeastern Arizona.
These recoveries mean the traditional maps of western monarch breeding areas and migration are innaccurate. Example: the Journey North website map of monarch breeding areas and migration: http://tinyurl.com/adrlwd which suggests southeastern Arizona has few or no monarchs, yet Joe Billings was able to tag about 800 monarchs there this past fall.