Enthusiasts note lack of butterflies in Michigan

Jul 6, 2013

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. (AP) - Enthusiasts across Michigan want to know: Where are the butterflies this year?

The Detroit Free Press says official data are being collected by monitoring groups around the state.

But anecdotally, it's not looking great.

Just ask Joe Derek.

Butterflies are absent from Derek's naturally landscaped property in Farmington Hills, where he grows 2 acres of native plants known to draw the fluttering beauties.

According to Derek, he'd normally see hundreds of butterflies this time of year. He says he's "never seen a season where we're not seeing butterflies really of any kind."

Holli Ward is the executive director of the Jenison-based Michigan Butterflies Project.

She says a cool, wet spring coupled with last year's hot, dry weather has made for "a terrible situation for monarchs."