Yes, that was a really scary article; i.e.“They’re going to be encountering a thousand miles of hell as they go through a nearly waterless, flowerless, nectarless landscape,” said Chip Taylor.
But strangely there have been no follow up articles about whether or not the monarchs at the overwintering sites in Mexico this past winter were dying in abnormal numbers due to low lipid reserves. Nor any recent articles about the size and vigor of the monarchs in Texas that just returned from the overwintering sites in Mexico.
Here are the Journey North March 21, 2011 vs March 21, 2012 maps of monarch sightings that were made in Texas and surrounding states between March 1 - 21. As everyone can see, sightings in March 2012 have not only greatly outnumbered those reported in March 2011, but the presumed weak, lipid starved butterflies have made more northward progress as compared to last year on March 21.