Monarch butterflies return to Pismo Beach

The butterflies are back in Pismo Beach.

State parks officials will hold an opening day celebration Oct. 29 to welcome back the butterflies to the Pismo State Beach Monarch Butterfly Grove.

The Pismo Beach colony of monarch butterflies is one of the largest in the nation, hosting an average of 25,000 butterflies over the past five years, according to http://www.monarchbutterfly.org, a site funded by the Pismo Beach Conference & Visitors Bureau.

The butterflies cluster in the limbs of a grove of eucalyptus trees from late October to February.

The event runs from noon to 2 p.m. at the grove, located on the west side of Highway 1, just south of the North Beach Campground in Pismo Beach.

The grove is staffed daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with docent programs at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.