Monarch Butterfly Hitches Flight To Texas Aboard Southwest Jet

Monarch butterfly (File)

SAN ANTONIO (November 6, 2012)--A monarch butterfly has made the trip from Albany, N.Y., to Texas aboard a commercial plane with help from a New York 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 so she contacted Dallas-based Southwest, which agreed to fly Manos-Jones and the butterfly to San Antonio for free.