Join in the Big Butterfly Count, a nationwide survey taking place from 20th July to 11th August and help protect UK butterflies and moths.
Simply visit www.bigbutterflycount.org to download a chart to help you identify 21 common butterflies and moths, then stand in a garden, park or field, (or any location where you might see butterflies), and record how many you see in 15 minutes. Register your findings on line and you'll help provide valuable information on the health of our wildlife and the environment.
By working with Butterfly Conservation we aim to raise awareness of the importance of butterflies and moths, underlining our goals of encouraging sustainable agriculture and helping to protect the environment.
Butterflies and moths are extremely sensitive to environmental change, which makes them excellent indicators of the health of the countryside. If they thrive in an area it suggests that it’s good for other wildlife too. They also play their part in the pollination of plants and the caterpillar stages provide food for many birds.
Sadly, butterflies and moths are declining rapidly because their habitats are being destroyed. Five species of butterfly have already become extinct in the UK and over half the remainder is threatened with extinction. Even some of our common species have declined dramatically, such as the Small Tortoiseshell.
Two thirds of our widespread moths are declining, which will have serious knock-on effects for all the birds and mammals that eat them or their caterpillars. If we lost insects, including butterflies and moths, from the UK, farmers would see impacts on some crop yields and a big drop in numbers of other species, including many small birds.
Sir David Attenborough, President of Butterfly Conservation, said:
Butterflies are wonderful, extraordinary creatures. Numbers have been falling, but Butterfly Conservation scientists have demonstrated that these declines can be reversed. They have also found that when you change the environment to help butterflies thrive, all sorts of other wildlife benefits too. Nature comes back to life. I am delighted Marks and Spencer is working with Butterfly Conservation to help reverse these declines.
Join the Big Butterfly Count between 20th July and 11th August – click here to find out more: www.bigbutterflycount.org
To find out more about the work of Butterfly Conservation, click here: www.butterfly-conservation.org
Find out how to create your own butterfly-friendly garden.Watch