Thursday, June 13, 2013

Butterflies and Other Invertebrates

by Donna L. Watkins

Donna at Brookgreen Gardens
Murrells Inlet, SC
There's always something new to learn each day.  It's astounding the amount of information that roams around the world.  A friend left me one of her newsletters on The Xerces Society.  It's a nonprofit organization that protects butterflies and all invertebrates through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat.

The society was named for the Xerces Blue Butterfly (Glaucopsyche xerces), the first butterfly in the United States known to have become extinct as a result of human activity.  This small, beautiful creature was once common on the San Francisco Peninsula's sandy dunes, where its host plants, lupine and deerweed, grew.  The expanding metropolis eventually overwhelmed this delicate coastal habitat, and the butterfly was last seen in 1941.

When I read that I just cried.  To think of anything that God made becoming extinct, when we were told to steward His Creation, makes me sad.  There's been so much of what God gave us for beauty and all that He made has His imprint on it.  Each having a purpose to show us something about the creativity and love of our Heavenly Father.

Butterflies, dragonflies, beetles, worms, starfish, mussels, and crabs are but a few of the millions of invertebrates at the heart of a healthy environment.  I never knew there was an organization dealing specifically with this segment of Creation that is so critical to all of our habitats.

Invertebrates build the stunning coral reefs of our oceans; they are essential to the reproduction of most flowering plants, including many fruits, vegetables, and nuts; and they are food for birds, fish, and other animals.

Yet invertebrate populations are often imperiled by human activities and rarely accounted for in mainstream conservation.

Over the past three decades, they have protected endangered species and their habitats, produced ground-breaking publications on insect conservation, trained thousands of farmers and land managers to protect and manage habitat, and raised awareness about the invertebrates of forests, prairies, deserts, and oceans.Visit the Website For More Information.

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