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Originally published Tuesday, November 6, 2012 at 10:36 AM

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Migrating butterfly gets help with plane ride

A delicate monarch butterfly, too late on its southward migration to Mexico, gets a ride part way on Southwest Airlines with an insect rescuer.

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Nice job Southwest good going! MORE

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SAN ANTONIO — A lagging monarch butterfly has made the trip from Albany, N.Y., to Texas with help from an airline and an insect lover.

Passenger Maraleen Manos-Jones on Monday carefully transported the butterfly on a Southwest Airlines flight to San Antonio. She kept the delicate butterfly in a padded, ice-cooled package before its release at the San Antonio Botanical Garden.

Manos-Jones first spotted the female butterfly in late September when it was still mid-metamorphosis at the gardens of her Shokan, Ulster County, home.

Manos-Jones realized that by Oct. 1 it was too cold for the newly emerged monarch to head south on its own to winter in Mexico. She contacted Dallas-based Southwest, which agreed to fly Manos-Jones and the butterfly to San Antonio for free.

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