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Researchers in a July 2011 study find significantly reduced populations of monarch butterflies across the US Midwest as milkweeds, where the butterflies lay eggs for their young, are being eliminated by herbicides as well as genetically modified corn and soybeans, leaving the butterflies flying over 100 million acres of farmland in search of the milkweed plants.

After its numbers dwindled to near extinction following a fungal blight, the iconic American chestnut tree may once again flourish thanks to scientists in Virginia, USA who report progress as of July 2011 in their efforts to save the tree through selective cross-pollination with its disease-resistant Chinese counterpart.