WRN image Bob Hague

Advocates say a bill to designate the Monarch Wisconsin’s official state butterfly is more than just symbolic. Former state treasurer Jack Voight is leading the effort.

“Really, the bill is to create more public awareness of the plight of the monarch butterfly. And hopefully . . . the public, homeowners, businesses, farmers and all other levels of government will embrace this concern, and plant more milkweed.”

Voight is co-owner and founder of the non–profit Butterfly Gardens of Wisconsin located in Appleton. He testified on the bill (SB 443) at the Capitol last week.

“Milkweed is the only monarch host plant to increase its population. If we don’t have increased population of the monarch butterfly, the monarch butterfly migration will not exist next year.”

Former Fitchburg mayor Steve Arnold – who’s also an entomologist – also testified in favor “Passing this bill will set in motion a host of actions to protect the monarch and make our ecosystems healthier. I grow milkweed in my own rain garden. Milkweed is the only food of the monarch caterpillar.”

Voight and  Arnold testified on the importance of monarchs and other pollinators to our crops and ecosystems.

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