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US groups link monarch butterfly decline to GM crops

US environmental and food advocacy groups have filed a petition with the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) calling for the monarch butterfly to be listed on the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The petition was filed by the Center for Food Safety, the Center for Biological Diversity and the Xerces Society and suggests that the widespread planting of genetically modified crops across the Midwestern US is driving the alarming decline in the overall population of the insects.The petitioners say that use of the herbicide, glyphosate, has effectively cost the monarch some 165 million acres of habitat, roughly one-third of their summer breeding grounds.

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