The Texas Department of Agriculture fined the Star S Ranch near Mason this week for two violations of pesticide drift at the Eckert James River Bat Cave.
“Dry January” started in Great Britain in 2012 when a nonprofit there called Alcohol Change launched the effort as a nationwide health initiative.
Unusually wet and cold weather kept monarch butterflies in San Antonio weeks after their usual peak migration season this year.
Based on robust activity in the monarchs' primary Midwestern breeding grounds, one monarch expert predicted "the migration should be the strongest since 2008."
The Nature Conservancy of Texas decided to close the Eckert James River Bat Cave to the public two months early.
Monarch butterflies will be beginning their migration soon, but in the meantime, another orange-and-black butterfly has arrived in droves.
Larger implications about the pesticide's effect on the 1.6 million Mexican free-tailed bats that visit there each summer remain unclear.
Experts and legislators discussed the decline of monarch butterfly and bee populations in Texas.
SAISD teacher Chéri Tondre and her students have converted a Bermuda grass-infested expanse into a Monarch butterfly and pollinator garden.
Those tracking monarch butterflies' migration through Texas to Canada this year will see nearly 15 percent fewer butterflies start the long journey.