A California woman encountered an injured monarch butterfly in her garden and made it her mission to help him fly again.
Dahlia noticed part of the butterfly’s wing was missing and he (males have two eye spots on the lower wings) was unable to fly.
She fed him nectar she made by watering down honey while she brainstormed a way to help. A trip to the craft store proved to be the answer. She found a pack of feathers that looked like the perfect fit.
After researching how other rescues repair butterfly wings, she used contact cement and carefully attached the feather.
And it worked.
She named him Nemo-Bucky the Bionic Butterfly and encouraged him to fly every day. He slowly started to gain strength and adjust to his new wing.
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Dahlia wanted her new friend to experience the great outdoors and brought him outside for “garden time”. But one day after resting for a few minutes on a flower, he suddenly flew up and away.
It was a bittersweet moment for Dahlia. She was glad that he was free, but she wasn’t ready to see him leave. She worried about him and hoped that his new wing held up.
Nemo didn’t forget his rescuer and came back for a visit. He was spotted on a flower in the garden, and it made Dahlia’s day.
She told the Dodo, “He was thriving and living his best butterfly life.”
She shared the entire rescue and rehabilitation on TikTok. Check out her other wildlife rescues, too!
People praised Dahlia for her lifesaving efforts and were in awe of her compassion towards Nemo. One person wrote, “That was very innovative of you to help the butterfly. Not many people would have taken the time and effort that you did to help such a delicate creature. I applaud your patience and diligence!”
Dahlia plans on writing a children’s book about Nemo so his story will live on forever. She also wanted a daily reminder of the tenacious butterfly, so she got a tattoo of him with the phrase “never give up”. Now whenever she misses him, she can simply look down at her arm.
Monarch butterflies have a short lifespan of just 2-6 weeks except for the last generation of the year, which can live up to 9 months.
Dahlia addressed this by saying, “It might be short and fleeting, but in the grand scheme of things, all of our lives are just a short blip here on Earth. What matters are the connections we make and who we help along the way.”
Watch the amazing story in the video below and don’t forget to share!
Monarch butterflies are spiraling towards extinction due in part to lack of milkweed. You can help by purchasing milkweed seeds and feeding these vital pollinators.
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