Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, March 16, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page A:7



Mountain View News Saturday, March 16, 2019 


So, I guess the word is out around town. Migrating butterflies 
have our skies all aflutter and there’s no stopping them now! 
The Painted Lady migration sensation is ON, and we Sierra 
Madreans have a front row seat for what I think to be the most 
wonderful wild-winged show on earth. With blue skies and puffy 
white clouds as a backdrop, who doesn’t feel the urge to pause 
and observe the wondrous beauty of the migrating butterfly?

Among the various locations where Painted Lady butterflies lay their eggs, the northern deserts of Mexico make a perfect 
nesting place. There they breed and feed, and in due time - having undergone metamorphosis - a new generation of 
butterflies emerge and take flight due north, driven by an instinct which, unlike GPS technology, needs no satellite to 
guide the flight.

With apparent ease, efficiency and precision, they maintain their northward drive until they arrive at their destination in 
the Pacific Northwest where they will begin the life-cycle all over again. Those delicately-decorated orange & brown winged 
creatures fly with vigorous determination, stopping only to perch and feed on their favorite plants such as milkweed, 
thistle and other wild-flowered fauna.

Painted Lady butterflies are only about an inch in length with wing spans of no more than 2 inches, but those little rascals 
are sure hardy, and boy can they ever fly! It’s amazing how far they migrate, given their tiny, feather-light bodies and 
countless potential hazards along the way. At first glance they appear to be randomly flitting with no real direction, but 
watch long enough and you’ll see that they keep the course due north and cover a remarkable distance in a relatively short 
period of time.

Although the Painted Lady migrates north across the San Gabriel foothills annually, the population making its way through 
Southern California this year is exponentially more voluminous than what we typically see. This season’s mega-migration 
is due to the super-bloom of wild flowers brought on by all the rainfall we’ve had this winter, experts say. 

It has been such fun watching the butterflies meander through the air over the past several days. I can’t quite explain it, but 
those aloof little insects brought comfort to me as I walked my canine companions last week. Not that I was in a position 
to need comfort, necessarily, because I’m a happy camper when I’m hanging out with my dogs, but there is just something 
about being surrounded by hundreds of butterflies on a migration mission that makes me feel like everything is going to 
be okay.

So often we hear unsettling reports on television or the internet about how earth is being destroyed by the fallout of human 
consumption and blatant disregard. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure it’s all true. We humans definitely lack respect for the 
globe that sustains us, as well as the other life forms that depend on her for survival. Some are better about it than others, 
but I suspect the mass majority of people today are terribly unmindful of the global impact their actions have - be they 
good, bad or ugly.

But when I see a massive population of Painted Ladies passing through our foothill village, I am encouraged that not all 
is at risk of loss or failure. It brings hope to my heart that the living things that God saw fit to place alongside us here on 
earth are much more tenacious than we give them credit for.

While I believe we humans need to be better stewards of the animals and other life forms we’ve been charged with, I am 
quite confident that God’s amazing creations are strong enough to overcome and endure much of what we egotistical 
homo sapiens have a tendency to do to harm our planet. Still, it is my prayer that people will become more humble, 
grateful caretakers of the gifts God has given us.

Another, perhaps more important thought that came to mind as I savored the moments I got to share with the amazing 
migrating butterflies over the past several days, was that, much like the physical metamorphosis they underwent before 
embarking on that daunting northward flight, I 
have had a sort of life-reformation experience of 
my own.

Of course, I didn’t turn from a worm into a 
butterfly, at least not literally. But in a similar 
way that the worm gets a second chance at life, 
to thrive as a butterfly, I believe God has granted 
me the opportunity to be renewed and live a 
better, more meaningful life. This is another one 
of those things I find hard to explain, but suffice 
it to say that I am one grateful child of God. The 
very moment I asked Him to, He freed me from 
the bondage of my proverbial cocoon and gave 
me wings to soar - like a butterfly!

Happy Tails

by Chris Leclerc



Sweet Abbie, now age 3, 
was found at 1 week old 
under a pallet. Her foster 
mom had to bottle feed her and she almost didn’t make 
it. She is a real love bug and any visitor that comes over 
she is eager to greet and say hello. Abbie is smart and has 
figured out how to open doors that have handles rather 
than knobs. She will come fully vetted. See more pictures 
and 2 videos of Abbie at, click on 
the “Independently Rescued” tab & scroll down. Please call 
562-500-7070 for a meet & greet.

GOOD NEWS: Parker & Charlotte have an adoption 

Do you have to many books at home? Wondering 
what to do with them? Come to The Book Rack and 
trade them in for a book you have not read.
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your reading pleasure.
204 S. First AveArcadiawebsite: bookrackarcadia.comPhone 626-446-2525
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