AUSTIN — The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) will be launching a new conservation license plate to raise money to help conserve monarch butterflies and other native Texas, non-game, at-risk species. The public is invited to vote for their favorite design for the new monarch butterfly license plate through an online survey that is open until Oct.3.
The public will be able to choose from three images of monarch butterflies to be featured on the license plate. Results from the survey will help the agency decide which of three colorful designs should be featured on the new specialty plate.The license plate designs appeal to those who garden, enjoy wildlife watching or simply appreciate the beauty of monarch butterflies.
“The monarch butterfly is a species that is beautiful and iconic in that it is one of nature’s great migration stories,” said John Davis, TPWD’s Wildlife Diversity Program Director. “This species migrates through Texas from Mexico in the spring making its way to the northern extremes of the U.S. and into Canada, then reverses that feat in the fall to overwinter in Mexico. This great migratory story is in jeopardy with the overwintering population experiencing precipitous declines in the last decade. By adding the monarch to our family of plates, we hope to increase support for this beautiful migration event and through our conservation efforts, brighten the future for this, and many other species.”
The TPWD Conservation License Plate Program has raised around $10 million in the last 20 years for wildlife and habitat conservation in Texas. The 10 conservation plate designs include a horned lizard, largemouth bass, hummingbird, white-tailed deer, bluebonnet, desert bighorn sheep, and others. These plates benefit Texas rivers, state parks, big game research and management and non-game wildlife species management. All TPWD conservation specialty plates cost $30 a year, with $22 going to TPWD to support various programs and efforts. Plates can be purchased for vehicles, RVs/travel trailers, trailers and motorcycles.
“TPWD uses conservation license plate funds to conduct research and management activities benefitting the state’s most at-risk species,” Davis added. “The conservation license plate program creates license plates that people enjoy and want to buy while also knowing their plate fee goes to the worthy cause of helping wildlife and plants in Texas.”