LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – The monarch butterfly is a major component of Michigan’s second-largest industry, agriculture. Now, lawmakers want to recognize that role by making it our official state insect.
Michigan and Iowa are the only states in the union without an official state insect. If the bill introduced in the State House of Representatives this week is passed, we would Alabama, Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, and Texas in naming the monarch our state insect.
Vermont and West Virginia both picked the European honey bee as their state insect but chose the monarch as their state butterfly.
This is not the first time Michigan lawmakers have tried to make the monarch our state insect. A push back in 2019 was inspired by schoolchildren, according to Michigan State University, but that bill never made it out of committee.
The monarch butterfly is a popular choice because of its supporting role in agriculture, but its status as a state symbol could also bring attention to its declining numbers. The monarch is in trouble due to a variety of complex factors from illegal avocado farming to ornamental milkweed plants.