Feb 9, 2024
$4.1 million in grants issued to help monarch butterfly, other pollinators

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) has awarded $4.1 million in grants through the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinators Conservation Fund. The grants are aimed to conserve monarch butterflies and other insect pollinators in 15 states. The grants will leverage $6.6 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $10.7 million.

Monarch Butterfly and Pollinators Conservation Fund Grants

The grants were awarded through the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinators Conservation Fund (Pollinator Fund), a partnership between NFWF and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management and the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and Forest Service (USFS), Bayer Crop Science, Danone North America and The ScottsMiracle-Gro Foundation.

The projects supported by the 18 grants announced will increase the quality and quantity of pollinator habitat for monarch butterflies, rusty patched bumble bees and other native pollinators. The projects will also enhance outreach and organizational coordination.

“The nation’s ecosystems and economy are inextricably linked to pollinators,” said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. “The grants announced today will support collaborative efforts to establish and manage habitat for pollinators living across the monarch butterfly’s eastern and western migratory routes.”


Collectively, it is expected that the projects announced will:

  • Restore and enhance more than 39,000 acres of pollinator habitat
  • Collect more than 140 pounds of milkweed seed
  • Propagate more than 46,000 milkweed seedlings
  • Host more than 130 workshops and meetings that advance pollinator conservation

Monarch Butterfly

The monarch butterfly is one of the most iconic species in North America, and its annual migration cycle is one of the most remarkable natural phenomena in the world. However, over the past 20 years, the monarch butterfly population has declined by more than 80% throughout much of its range. Several other pollinators have experienced similarly dramatic declines in recent decades. Habitat loss is a primary threat to many of these species.

“The NFWF Pollinator Fund showcases what is truly possible when diverse partners come together to drive restoration of biodiversity and ecosystem services with on-the-ground conservation projects. Bayer continues to be a proud supporter of this program as we believe that our commitments to biodiversity and productivity in the agricultural landscape are compatible goals,” said Tim Fredricks, environmental engagement manager for Bayer Crop Science.

“Danone North America is pleased to be advancing pollinator conservation on private working lands,” said Christopher Adamo, vice president of public affairs and regenerative agriculture policy at Danone North America. “Almonds and other specialty crops provide unique opportunities to support agricultural operations and pollinators across the United States. Biodiversity is a fundamental component of our holistic regenerative agriculture framework that considers local conservation needs.”

“Maintaining, restoring, and improving habitat are crucial for species like the monarch butterfly, Dakota skipper, rusty patched bumble bee, and other native pollinators,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Martha Williams. “The Service is proud to participate in this science-based, outcome-focused partnership for the benefit of a diverse group of pollinators and the American people.”

“Aligned with our Pollinator Promise to help establish and enhance pollinator gardens, we look forward to the continued efforts in conserving and recovering pollinators through the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinators Conservation Fund,” said Brian Herrington, president of The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation. “Through our collective endeavor with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, we will make a more powerful impact.”

In 2015, NFWF established the Monarch Butterfly and Pollinators Conservation Fund, a public–private partnership that funds projects to protect, conserve, and increase habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators. By leveraging the resources and expertise of its partners, the fund is helping to reverse recent population declines and ensure the survival of these valuable species. Since 2015, the fund has awarded $23.8 million to 140 projects that are helping conserve and recover the monarch butterfly while also benefiting other pollinator species. Grantees have matched this investment with an additional $38.9 million for a total on-the-ground impact of $62.7 million.