Fall Monarch Migration Through Texas

Texas Monarch Watch

Return to Texas Entomology - Compiled by Mike Quinn

Monarchs occur throughout Texas during the fall migration, but 

the largest concentrations generally follow the historical pattern indicated here:


Mapp of Fall Monarch Migration Through Texas

Midpoint peak migration data per Monarch Watch.

Below is a stylized version of the above monarch migration map.


Mapp of Fall Monarch Migration Through Texas

To determine when monarchs are about to fly through your area:

Consult the following website here dubbed:
"Moving Days for Monarchs
for a 3-day wind direction and speed predictions to fine tune when and where large monarch movements might be.
Monarchs are generally non-migratory during southerly winds so look for when northers are passing.
(Set for Dallas, but forecast location can be changed) 

Coastal Flyway Information

Note: the timing of the coastal migration lags behind that of the Texas interior.

See Harlen Aschen's coastal report of monarch numbers by date
for Point Comfort, TX, October-November 2006

Maps and Data of Prior Fall Migrations through Texas

Interactive Central Flyway Migration Map - Fall 2008 

Texas Monarch Flyway Analysis - Fall 2007

Interactive Coastal Flyway Migration Map - Fall 2007

Daily Monarch Observations in Hunt, TX - Fall 2002

Average Midpoint and Peak Abundance of the Fall Migration by Latitude

Note, Monarchs trickling through Texas early each September are known as "Pre-migratory" Monarchs

Latitude Midpoint Peak in monarch abundance Corresponding
major cities
37 27 September 19 September - 1 October KS - OK Border
35 2 October 24 September - 6 October Amarillo 
33 7 October 29 September - 11 October Lubbock, Denton
31 12 October 4-16 October Midland, Waco
29 18 October 10-22 October Del Rio, Galveston
27 23 October 15-27 October Laredo, Kingsville
25 28 October 20 October - 1 November Monterrey, N.L., MX
23 4 November 27 October -8 November S. of CD Victoria, MX
21 11 November 3-15 November  
19.4 18 November 10-22 November Overwintering Sites

Source: Peak Monarch Migration Dates - Monarch Watch

The monarch distribution contrasts with more easterly distribution of Texas population - U.S. Census Bureau

Monarch flyway primarily originates in the upper Midwest
as exemplified by this map of fall Monarch roosts - Journey North

04 Apr 2013   Mike Quinn / entomike@gmail.com / Texas Entomology / Texas Monarch Watch