Most people have never heard of the Karner Blue butterfly and probably will never see one before they become extinct. Unfortunately, the savanna habitat that the Karner Blue requires is rapidly dwindling due to human intrusion and invasion by exotic species like buckthorn, honeysuckle and other invasive species.
The Karner Blue butterfly can still be found in scattered locations from New Hampshire to Minnesota, however; the Karner Blue lays its eggs on only one plant, the wild blue lupine (Lupinus perennis). As the sandy open woodland where the blue lupine thrives rapidly dwindles…so goes the Karner Blue butterfly.
I would like to say that growing blue lupine in your own natural landscape will help to keep the Karner Blue from disappearing, but what they really need is large protected areas where both the lupines and butterflies can multiply.
I hope that somehow happens before the Karner Blue becomes extinct, but in the meantime I will grow and enjoy the wild blue lupine in my rain garden and hope that maybe someday a few Karner Blues will find me.
Read more about the Karner Blue butterfly at the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service website.