Most known for their winter and spring migrations spanning more than 3000 miles (4828 km), the monarch butterfly is a small but key component to the ecosystem in terms of food and its role as a pollinator. “The Flight of the Monarch Butterfly – The Pollinator Project” will explore the latest science, learnings and the species’ survival issues Thursday, July 29, at 5 p.m. (ET/PT) on the Science Channel and Saturday, July 31, at 8 a.m. (ET/PT) on Animal Planet.
With exclusive access arranged by the Mexican Minister of Tourism, the program highlights the monarchs’ dramatic journey throughout North America and examines scientists’ concerns about the species’ diminishing numbers due to pollution and climate fluctuations. It also addresses what the declining population could mean for the future of the broader ecosystem.
“Sustainability is at the heart of our decision making,” said Kevin Butt, Toyota Motor North America’s environmental sustainability director. “As we plan, build, and manage our facilities across North America, we proactively learn about local species and study how to minimize the disruption of their natural habitats – environmental stewardship then helps drive a culture of conservation beyond our company walls.”
The program also examines what American companies have created in the pathway of the butterflies’ northern flight pattern – a habitat rich with milkweed plants – and issues a call to action for interested people to get involved through local and national clubs and organizations that make their journey easier.
Presented as one example helping to save, protect, and nurture the monarch butterfly’s migration to North America, the program explores Toyota’s 17 pollinator gardens throughout its North American operations and shows how they provide food and shelter to critical pollinator species, including the monarch butterflies at various stages of their life cycle along the seasonal migration path.
Viewers will have the opportunity to see it on the following broadcasts. Check local listings:
Science Channel: Thursday, July 29 at 5 p.m. (EDT & PDT)
Animal Planet: Saturday, July 31 at 8 a.m. (EDT & PDT)
“The Flight of the Monarch Butterfly – The Pollinator Project” is produced by Bader Media Group for Discovery. Mike Leventhal is executive producer for Bader. Jay Foot served as producer/writer. Toyota funded the production.