Butterﬂies are not only beautiful to observe, but they serve a critical environmental purpose. Butterﬂies, bees, moths, birds, and other pollinators contribute to the lifecycle of over 75% of the world’s ﬂowering plants. We depend on pollinators to strengthen ecosystems and maintain life-sustaining biological diversity in nature.
Supporting Pollinator Education, Outreach, Research, and Conservation
At Texas Woman's University’s Denton campus, situated in the monarch butterfly migration pathway, the Dr. Bettye Myers Butterfly Garden and Professor Jeff Robb Outdoor Classroom serve as educational spaces for students and the community in the fight for a sustainable environment. The garden project consists of two phases. Phase I is located on the grounds of the Ann Stuart Science Complex. Phase II is located West of the Texas Pond, which is a large showcase garden. These gardens allow for the creation of pollinator habitats, as educational observatories, and research laboratories. The gardens contribute to and help sustain the monarch butterfly migration through intentional plantings of milkweed that serve as waystations for passing monarch butterflies on their annual migration route. The butterfly garden also contributes to water conservation by using drought-resistant and native plants.
Your support is an investment in the continued care of the gardens including the addition of benches, trees, plants, and mulch to further develop educational outreach and research programs.
Environmental and Ecological Research at TWU
Monarch butterflies travel the “monarch highway” to and from Mexico's Central Highlands located in Michoacán, MX. This path is one of two main routes, or flyways, that the insects follow through Texas on their long journey south which takes place throughout October and into November. Given Texas' unique position along the monarch migration route, TWU and its partners are taking a leadership role in conserving and enhancing the habitat for the iconic monarch butterfly.
In addition to teaching our students about sustainability and environmental responsibility, we continue to develop educational tools for the public including other universities, K-12 schools, businesses, and organizations. Our partners have the opportunity to learn water conservation practices and preservation and restoration of wildlife habitat for their own properties. Investment in greenspaces, like this one, helps to reduce stress and anxiety, create clean air, treat stormwater runoff, and supports educational opportunities.
- Improving environmental literacy by providing students with hands-on learning environments
- Creating sustainable habitats for pollinators to increase their populations and establishing partner pollinator habitats
- Increasing civic responsibility for habitat restoration, preservation, and environmental protection
- Building a database of plant-pollinators in the area, including their importance for farmland
- Publishing research results in scientific journals and disseminating information to land managers and policymakers
- Developing a step-by-step guide for transforming traditional lawns into pollinator gardens