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Butterfly Marking (Danainae)

The average life span of a butterfly is only a couple of weeks, and most of them do not overwinter as adult. However, the life span of Danainae is usually 6 to 8 months. They migrate seasonally and overwinter as adults. The climate in the north during winter is colder, while it is warmer and flavour plant growth in the south. Migrating to the south does not only bring Danainae a better food source, but they can also avoid the cold weather as well as their predators. Therefore, Danainae migrates to the south in autumn and winter, and migrate back to the north for reproduction in spring and summer.
The Mark-Release-Recapture (MRR) study is carried out by capturing and recording the information of the overwintering Danainae individuals, and applying markings of date and location on their wings, before releasing them back to the nature. Recapturing of marked individuals will allow the researchers to trace their migration path, providing useful information for their conservation.

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