The Abundance of Butterflies at LettsSafari
LettsSafari parks are bucking the downward trend in the Big Butterfly Count
Despite a summer of glorious sunshine, fewer butterflies than ever were recorded in the world’s largest crowdsourced insect count. On average, fewer than nine butterflies per count were spotted in this summer’s Big Butterfly Count, the lowest in the 13 years of Butterfly Conservation’s popular summer recording scheme.
It is the third year in a row that the count has recorded its lowest-ever average abundance, a worrying sign that once-common flying insects are continuing to disappear from Britain. And yet at LettsSafari parks and gardens butterfly numbers continue to grow - with numerous species spotted including the rare fritillaries.
We take a look at some of the key habitats for butterflies - so we can all add to the next count:
Rolling meadows, pastures and heathland provide the perfect habitat for wildflowers to thrive for butterflies and moths.
Marshes, fens and bogs are home to a variety of plants suited to wetter conditions that some butterflies and moths thrive on.
Woodland and scrub
Butterflies and moths are generally found within the open, sunny glades and rides of woods but some prefer the tree canopy.
Urban and industrial
Gardens are invaluable as nectar sources. And abandoned industrial areas are often overlooked habitats. Factors in the loss of butterflies in towns and cities include the popularity of plastic grass, the paving over of front gardens for parking spaces, “garden grabbing” by developers and rising levels of nitrates from traffic, which affect butterflies’ food plants. Perhaps we should all practice wildlife gardening.
Farmland and hedgerows
Farmland is a key habitat, particularly those farms with areas of species-rich grassland, hedgerows and field margins.
And we can all build small hedgerows!
But, if we get it right this could be the future!
Did you know that you can donate a subscription to LettsSafari as well - making an even bigger climate difference.