|Thousands of Beautiful Monarch Butterflies
Wintering in Santa Cruz California
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色彩豔麗的帝王斑蝶 （君主斑蝶）， 翅膀上有顯眼的黃褐橙色及黑色斑紋，邊緣有兩串
Every winter, huge number of beautiful Monarch butterflies come to winter by clustering on the branches of
eucalyptus (尤加利 樹) grove or pine grove in California central coast. One of such wintering place for
Monarch butterflies is the Lighthouse Field State Beach Park in Santa Cruz. This park is located at the
junction of Pelton Ave. & W. Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz, CA.
The orange-and-black monarch butterflies are considered the “king” of the butterflies, hence the
We came to Santa Cruz on January 11, 2016 to enjoy watching Monarch butterflies in addition to visit the
Mystery Spot. The day time temperature reached 57 degrees F which is warm enough such that many
Monarch butterflies were fluttering and flying around among several tall eucalyptus trees and pine trees along
the north side of the field in this park.
We parked our car on Lighthouse Ave near the junction of Pelton Ave and Lighthouse Ave.
We walked on this short trail from Pelton Ave into the park.
One of many eucalyptus flowers in this area. The eucalyptus tree is flowering from about December to May,
while the monarch is roosting in the tree in the winter season. The flowers of eucalyptus flowers contain a
copious amount of nectar for the Monarch butterflies when there are few other sources of nectar in the winter
Many flower buds on eucalyptus trees.
It was a fantastic experience to see so many beautiful Monarch butterflies in action in this park. I took a movie
clip and uploaded it to the YouTube website at:
Please take a look.
Several known winter sanctuaries for monarch butterflies in California central coast are:
Monarch Grove Sanctuary located at 250 Ridge Rd, Pacific Grove, California 93950.
Natural Bridges State Beach and Monarch Butterfly Natural Preserve at: 2531 W Cliff Dr, Santa Cruz, CA
95060. The park’s Monarch Grove provides a winter home for over 100,000 monarchs each winter.
Pelton Ave in Santa Cruz: Lighthouse Field State Park at junction of Pelton Ave. & W. Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz,
CA, Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary on the flowering eucalyptus trees at Pelton Ave along the north side of the
San Simeon Natural Preserve at San Simeon, CA 93452 , is also the wintering site for monarch butterfly
populations. San Simeon State Park is located 35 miles north of San Luis Obispo on Highway 1, and 5 miles
south of the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument Visitor Center.
Monarch Butterfly Grove at extreme southern end of the City of Pismo Beach just off Hwy 1. Pismo Beach’s
monarch colony is one of the largest in the nation, hosting an average of 25,000 butterflies over the last five
years. The butterfly grove is located right along Highway 1. You walk in a circle, look at the trees and enjoy
Goleta Monarch Butterfly Grove, Ellwood Main, 7701 Hollister Avenue, Goleta, CA. East of Santa Barbara,
West of the campus of University of California at Santa Barbara. This is the premier Monarch site in southern
California, with close to 100,000 Monarchs in good years.
2. Many Surfers in action on Steamer Lane in Santa Cruz
Furthermore, this Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary is only a few steps away from the internationally renowned
surfing hotspot known as "Steamer Lane" near the Santa Cruz Lighthouse Point on West Cliff Drive. Perched
on the cliffs of Santa Cruz overlooking the Pacific Ocean is the Lighthouse Field State Beach Park. This is an
excellent location for many tourists to enjoy close up views of surfers catching the perfect wave on the
It was outdoor recreation at its finest, and we were happy to enjoy the show, even if we preferred to stay on
dry land. It was amazing to be so close to the surfing action while also feeling so utterly safe and at ease.
You can walk along the edge of the coast and listen to the surf crash on the rocks below, plus a beautiful
grove of Cyprus trees on the other side. You can watch the surfers try to catch that perfect wave. It's a
breathtaking site with a breathtaking view, looking out onto the eternal expanse of the Pacific Ocean. It's
absolutely beautiful, just stand at the top of the cliffs and take it all in.
I took a move clip of several surfers in action and uploaded it to the YouTube website at:
Please take a look.
More photos and stories about beautiful Santa Cruz are on my web page at:
There is a display panel about Monarch butterfly near those pine trees and eucalyptus trees where many
thousands of Monarch butterflies are located.
Many Monarch butterflies are fling among those trees.
1. Many Thousands of Monarch Butterflies Wintering in Santa Cruz
Amazing 3000-Mile Multi-Generation Migration of Monarch Butterfly
One of the world’s most astounding natural events occurs each year in North America, featuring one of its
most unlikely creatures, the delicate monarch butterfly. Every autumn, tens of millions of monarchs set flight on
a remarkable 3,000-mile journey from the northern U.S. and Canada to their ancestral wintering roosting sites.
In the Spring and Summer seasons, brilliant and beautiful Monarch butterflies migrate north all over the North
America in Canada and USA. But in autumn season and winter season, Monarch butterflies migrate south to
avoid freezing temperature. Monarch butterflies cannot endure freezing temperature.
Monarchs east of the Rocky Mountains spend the winters in high mountains in central Mexico.
Monarchs west of the Rockies migrate to their wintering locations on the California central coast.
It is amazing that it takes 4 generations of monarch butterflies to complete their 3000-mile migration loop. In
other words, it is not the same monarch butterfly that completes the entire 3000-mile loop. Instead, it takes the
relay of 4 sequential generations of monarch butterfly to complete the 3000-mile migration loop. These newly
born monarch butterflies among the 4 generations have no previous experience for such long distance
migration loop. How do they know which direction and where to migrate to as part of the 3000-mile loop? The
location of their breeding grounds remained a mystery until 1977. How an infant generation of monarch
butterflies finds their breeding ground or wintering ground anew each year is still an enigma.
Each year, the monarch butterflies make a migration between Canada and Mexico or California central coast
and find the same forests to spend the winter, even though no monarch butterfly lives to make the full round