Sierra Monarch Rescue

About Us

Bee part of the flyway!


The Wopumnes 501c3, Sierra Monarch and Pollinator Rescue Project started out to build 32 miles pollinator flyway in El Dorado county.  Over the months of our first year on this project, 2023, community interest has exploded it into a network of 150+ miles of Protected Pollinator Habitat connectivity flyway made up of private properties, working farms and government properties, creating a Flyway Corridor project running West to East from the Central Valley, through Amador, El Dorado, Placer, Nevada and Yuba Counties.

The flyway will reduce the distance Monarchs and other pollinators have to fly to the next nutritious habitat in the foothills of Amador, El Dorado, Placer, Nevada and Yuba Counties during the spring/summer/fall breeding season. 

Benefits of the flyway:

  • Minimize the travel distance for migrating pollinators by establishing contiguous, nutrient-rich, protected foraging habitats.
  • Cease pesticide application in areas designated for foraging to protect pollinator health.
  • Develop year-round companion foraging resources essential for diverse pollinator species.
  • Establish milkweed foraging zones and breeding grounds for Monarch Butterflies and other beneficial insects.
  • Create educational habitats at schools to facilitate learning about pollinators.
  • Enhance access for pollinators to Sierra Foothill Farms and Forests.
  • Engage Citizen Scientists in gathering and reporting data on pollinator habitat efficacy and migration patterns, aiding State and Federal research and funding initiatives.
  • Promote Food Justice, Organic Gardening, and food accessibility in underserved communities.
  • Enable participation in sustainability and education for underserved groups, including Indigenous peoples, the Disabled, Veterans, and those with low income.
  • Create long term protected habitats registered with Sierra Monarch Rescue to provide Land Stewards with Technical Assistance in best practices, integrated pest management, and other available services as they come up.
  • The project will bring together a coalition of nonprofit groups, schools, businesses, government agencies and individuals like you, to bring back the Monarch Butterfly and supporting pollinators to the Sierra Foothills.  Fill out the online form today!

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Why a migration...

California Indians cultivated a variety of native plants, including Buckeye, Valley Oaks, Soap Root, and Milkweed. The Miwoks, Nisenan, and other tribes would transport these plants and plant them near their villages for later use. Professor Jelmer Eerkens of UC Davis's Department of Anthropology notes that these tribes managed California's lands.

The accompanying illustrations compare the Native Trade Routes on the left with the migration paths of Monarchs and birds in California and the Midwest on the right. The natives planted pollinator-favored plants along their trade routes, which also attracted deer and other animals, providing food right to their doorsteps. These plants are often found near the grinding mortars used by the natives to grind acorns for porridge. Milkweed was utilized for its latex and for making cordage.

However, many of these trade routes have been disrupted by development, destroying habitats that pollinators and monarchs relied on. The next generation of monarch's arrive to find that their favorite habitat is now a house development or a parking lot. Sierra Monarch Rescue's flyway aims to re-establish habitats along these traditional Native and Pollinator migration paths. The historic Nisenan of El Dorado County and the Wopumnes are sponsoring this Monarch and Pollinator Rescue project to honor their native culture. You can register today to join the Pollinator Flyway Network.


The Sierra Monarch and Pollinator Rescue Project is sponsored by the Wopumnes Nisenan and Mewuk of El Dorado County Heritage Preservation Society. We are a California Native American Intertribal Organization established in 2018 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation EIN 83-2671897. We are an IRS tax exempt organization and donations made are tax deductible according to the IRS. Themission of our non-profit is to protect and restore cultural practices, and historic and natural sites, important to the Nisenan and Mewuk Indians, for the education and enjoyment of future generations.

Winner CDFA
Pollinator Habitat Project

We have been awarded the Pollinator Habitat Project Grant from the California Department of Food and Agriculture. You can see the award announcement on this Youtube link. We are the last 10 seconds of the video.

Evidence of Nonprofit

Our nonprofit was established November 2018. IRS Tax ID 83-2671897