Oct 26 2021

E&E Seminar Series: “Global range expansion in the monarch butterfly: ecological and evolutionary implications” by Micah Freedman (University of Chicago)

October 26, 2021

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

a monarch butterfly resting on some grass


4289 SELE


Chicago, IL 60624

Join us on October 26th for "Global range expansion in the monarch butterfly: ecological and evolutionary implications" presented by Micah Freedman (University of Chicago)

Host: Mary Ashley

Abstract: Monarch butterflies are best known from their North American range, where they complete a spectacular multi-generational migration each year. However, over recent evolutionary history, monarchs have also greatly expanded their geographic range and can now be found in locations as disparate as Guam, Australia, Puerto Rico, and Morocco. Across most of their novel range, monarchs form non-migratory, year-round breeding populations, and have life histories distinct from their migratory ancestors. This seminar will explore the timing of the monarch’s global range expansion (when and how did they become established outside of North America?) as well as the ecological and evolutionary consequences of this range expansion. In particular, I will focus on (1) how loss of seasonal migration has affected monarch wing morphology and (2) how interactions with novel assemblages of milkweed host plants have influenced patterns of caterpillar performance and toxin sequestration. I will conclude with a brief discussion of the ways in which non-migratory populations can contribute to our understanding of monarch butterfly conservation.



emily beaufort

Date posted

Aug 9, 2021

Date updated

Oct 7, 2021