Donato Guerra

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    • Day 261

      Monarch Flutter Bys

      February 1, 2017 in Mexico ⋅ ☀️ 12 °C

      We couldn't resist another dip in the hot pools before we left, then we drove a couple of hours to the Cerro Pelón, a place famous for its butterflies. Each year they gather here and 2 other places nearby to mate in their millions. The males then die but something truly remarkable happens; the pregnant females fly north in March and lay their eggs in southern eastern USA, their offspring metamorphose in May and then fly all the way to the Great Lakes where they breed and then the next generation starts the whole process again - a journey of some 4,500km over 3 generations.

      We again declined the use of horses to get our lungs and legs back in shape, and set off up an extremely steep and incredibly dusty trail. An hour and a half of hard slog up to 3,000m and we saw our first butterflies fluttering by. Another 5 minutes further on and our guide Emilio stopped us and pointed at the trees - at first you just see a few hundred butterflies sunning themselves on the branches, but then you realise that what you thought was normal tree was in fact millions and millions of butterflies crammed together and weighing down the branches much like frozen snow does. We sat there and watched them in wonder for half an hour, before making our way back to the community campground and a meal in our guide's aunt's restaurant (in fact the only restaurant in town).

      It was an amazing experience and the photos/videos don't don't come close to doing it justice.
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